Gary Burd, a software engineer on the Google Talk team, wrote in a blog post earlier today:

I flipped the switch to connect the Google Talk Service to the public XMPP network this morning. Google Talk users can now chat with users on other XMPP services and vice versa.

This means that users signed in to Google Talk via their Gmail accounts will now be able to communicate across networks with people who are connected to other XMPP servers like etc. It looks like their first step towards federating instant messaging services. Hopefully, decent interop with AIM will follow soon, now that Google owns part of AOL.

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