Lots and lots of rumours about Google and IM. Hello (part of the Picassa purchase) is an IM application -- Windows-only, proprietary protocol, used for image sharing/posting. It is more likely that Google will line up behind Jabber/XMPP, since:
- many other IM vendors are lining up behind SIMPLE (which is what the telcos/bellheads like, because it's an extension of SIP); Jabber already interoperates with SIP/SIMPLE through a gateway, and is more likely to be backed by internet/web/IP types
- Jabber already includes the capability to run "gateways" to other IM services, which would be a mainstream (as opposed to Adium on Mac or Trillian on Windows) example of an interface that lets you "talk" to all protocols
Some thoughts of Google's play include tying gmail IDs into Jabber/IM IDs, potentially even having chat logs stored in a similar, Gmail interface (and showing text ads, which would fit with their business models). Of course, with an ID infrastructure, plus permissions and contact lists, things like filtering email/identifying spam becomes easier as well.