Poll: Google's Shooting for Skype
How so? Google Talk lets users switch from text chat to a voice conversation with the click of a button (see Google Talks the Talk). At the very least, that siphons voice minutes from Skype, Vonage, and any other company whose premise is to connect people without use of the PSTN.
Google's recent moves are part of an effort to increase the stickiness of its online property by adding new services beyond Web search. Google has already added email, mapping and location apps, a new “side bar” organizational tool announced Monday, and now, an IM service with voice support (see Google Searches Planet Earth).
And, just in time for all this intrigue is a new poll -- Google Talk Talk -- that gauges reader opinions on the significance of Google's first real move into the telecom space. So far, a full 42 percent of the respondents say Skype has the most to lose if Google Talk takes off.
In addition to gauging the impact of Google's IM service on existing VOIP players, the Light Reading poll also asks what Google will buy next with its cash surplus. Nearly a third of the poll takers so far say Google will buy Skype.
But can Google really go the next step by offering PSTN-connected long distance services or mobile calling services? You tell us. The poll's open all week.
— Mark Sullivan, Reporter, Light Reading