I have mixed feelings about Google. While I generally think that they turn out very good products, I do have my doubts about their data collection strategies.

Anyhow, I just checked my Gmail account online, and to my surpise, they have now added some kind of chat feature. Why?! Do I really need even more chat and IM capabilities? I mean, right now, I am online in the following ways:

  • Skype voice
  • Skype IM
  • IRC
  • Hyperborea
  • MSN
  • Yahoo
  • Jabber

Do I really need another channel? Honestly, I don't think so. However, it does seem like the next 'natural' step to the Google Desktop OS...

update:b3n just pointed out to me that there is yet another Google IM-like thing out there. It is called Google Talk.

It seems more and more like they are adopting strategies that we have seen in other large software companies: Embrace, Extend and Extinguish...