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Is Google's IM/VoIP Combo Worth It?

Find out if Google's marriage of IM and VoIP is worthy of raves.

This story appears in the December 2005 issue of Entrepreneur. Subscribe »

Google's new Google Talk isn't the best VoIP phone service; Skype is. It isn't the best IM service; that title goes to AOL Instant Messenger. Google Talkis likely to disappoint both high-volume VoIP and IM aficionados.

But casual users will find it a convenient blend of both mediums nicely integrated with Gmail, whose responsiveness and innovative message archiving make it an acceptable office e-mail system. Unlike AOL, MSN and Yahoo! web mail, Gmail is useful for something more than personal or backup messaging. What Google brings to the party is the successful integration of several hot-hot-hot communications technologies under one intuitive and sprightly interface.

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