So you want video with your Google Talk, huh? Well, almost every other competing instant messaging client has it, while GTalk, for the longest time, has not. I know, bummer, right? I would really love to have video chats with my GTalk buddies. Thank goodness somebody found a way to have video chat with GTalk. There are two ways to have video with GTalk though: one unofficial plugin, and one new solution cooked up by Google.
If you’re using the GTalk client, you can install a plugin that will let GTalk have video. This, by the way, is a video plugin that works with all chat clients that use the Jabber protocol (which GTalk uses). The amazing thing about this plugin is that you can use this to use video with anyone who is on Jabber. And you can even use this for videoconferencing. So you can use your Google Talk chat window to make a video call to your friend on AdiumX who is on a Mac, and then invite a third friend into the conference who is using Meebo on Linux, and then that person can actually invite another person, who is on ICQ on Windows, etc.
The other way would be to use Google’s brand-new hot plugin to use the integrated chat window in Gmail. And just like the previous plugin I mentioned, this plugin also lets third-party applications and networks choose to interoperate with Gmail voice and video chat. Pretty soon we’d be able to have video calls to other chat networks have video chats with your Google Talk account.
So how do we get video calls in Gmail? First, download and install the new plugin, and then go to your Gmail account. Open up a chat window with one of your buddies, and then click on the “Video & more” menu at the bottom of your Gmail chat window, and choose “Start video chat.” After a few seconds, a video window will open and you’ll see and hear your friend live, right from within Gmail. You can click the “pop-out” icon to bring the chat into its own window independent of Gmail. You can even turn the video into full-screen.
So there you have it: two ways to have video calls in Google Talk. Tell me if you’ve tried any of these.