Well, I guess it was inevitable. Google now has its own instant messaging client. 'Google Talk' has just been released, and well, it's very clean and simple. Currently there's only Windows client available, but it's interoperable with iChat, so I can talk with my friends in Mac, too. KPUG members had lots of enthusiasm towards the new Google gadget, and I got around 30 buddies registered in 3 hours. Whoa.
Since this uses the Gmail address, Google Talk has the upside of doubling as Gmail notifier. Well, I'm already sold on this product. There are serious functional shortcomings (no group chat, no file transfer, slight typing incompatiblities for Korean language, etc.) but since this is a preview version and I've already filed bug reports, I expect it to improve considerably as it hits official release.