Cbs228 writes “During last week’s Google I/O conference, the company announced a replacement for its aging Talk instant messenger: Google Hangouts. Hangouts, which is only available for Android, iOS, and Chrome, offers closer integration with Google+. Unfortunately, the new product drops support for the XMPP instant messaging protocol, which has been an integral part of Talk for over ten years. XMPP delivers instant messages to desktop clients, like Pidgin, and enables communication between users on different instant messaging networks. Hangouts users attempting to communicate with contacts on non-Google servers, such as jabber.org, have found that all communications have been suddenly and inexplicably severed. A Google account is now required to communicate with Hangouts users. Google Hangouts joins the ranks of an already-crowded ecosystem of closed, incompatible chat products like Skype.” Interesting, because Google Wave was based on XMPP and Google was integral to the creation of the Jingle extension that enabled video chatting over XMPP. Note that no end date has been set for Talk yet, but the end must surely be nigh given Google’s recent history of axing products like Reader and iCal support from their calendar app without much notice.
A few days after Google announced the ability to send money via email, mobile payments purveyor Square has done the same.
Square Cash, which the company introduced in invite-only mode on Monday, lets consumers send money to friends by cc-ing “firstname.lastname@example.org” and including the dollar amount in the email’s subject line. Square takes a $0.50 cut of each transaction. The program is also open only to those who are 18 and older. Though Square had been focused on businesses, this release appears to be geared towards consumers.
At the moment, Square isn’t disclosing much else about the program. The company has included a short animation illustrating how such an email might look: Read more…
The Chinese hackers who breached Google’s corporate servers 41 months ago gained access to a database containing classified information about suspected spies, agents, and terrorists under surveillance by the US government, according to a published report.