So I have decided to started a weekly(ish) blog topic on something that has bugged me for years. As far as I am concerned, and I am sure most would agree, technology is there to make people’s life better and easier. Streamlined products that all work seemlessly with each other to make a very enjoyable are great. For the most part Apple has this (kind of, as long as you play by their rules), WebOS had this with their devices (That was a great UX experience) and Google is slowing moving towards streamlining everything. But it seems to have far to many channels to try and do this effectively. The prime example of this is Google Talk.
Google Talk has existed since 2005, providing an instant message system between any user with a Google account, be it Gmail, Android or Google Apps. The feature is probably most noticeable on Google’s web based Gmail site where users have the option to IM any of their Google contacts. While this is great, Google had a great opportunity to seamlessly merge gTalk with all their other services, but they have never seemed to really take that step. A prime example of what they should have done can be seen with Apple’s iMessage. An instant messaging protocal that seamlessly syncs between desktop, phone and tablet. It doesnt require the user to do anything fancy, all they need is their friends mobile number or itunes account email address. Google already has the largest mobile install base in the world, with the worlds biggest webmail platform. They have everything they need to make this seamless in android through gTalk (or something different if they had to) yet they havent. I have recently found a pretty slick app that allows me to sync my texts over gTalk, but it is no where near as elegant as iMessage, or an Android OS layer method would be.
I have no idea why Google still hasn’t streamlined these products, it would have made a lot of sense to do so when Ice Cream Sandwich came out and unified the tablet and mobile experience. Or even more so with Jelly Bean, when they finally got round to making a super slick OS. However, still no joy. It seems that for the time being at least, we will have to make do with (great) third party alternatives.
Dont even begin to get me started on why we cant have bluetooth or wifi syncing of texts between tablet and mobile so we can text people from a tablet. Another rant for another day.