How often have you wished that you could send an instant message from your AIM account to your friend on Yahoo IM? It is a pain to have to have an account with each of the instant messaging account; however programs like Digsby, Trillian and Pidgin have made the process a lot easier to manage. With these programs, you can sign onto all of your instant messaging accounts from one program.
Right now, Google and AIM can instant message each other; while Yahoo and MSN can instant message each other. There is a rumor going around that Google and Yahoo will allow their instant messaging platforms to mingle — which would, in turn, open up global instant messaging for a good portion of the instant messaging clients.
If Yahoo and Google do open up their respective clients to one another, this will be a very beneficial move to both parties because they have already integrated other platforms: Yahoo with Live Messenger and Google with AIM. Also, If it does happen users will at least of the option to pick between the two and get the best of the majority of these networks. If you have the majority of your contacts on Yahoo and Windows Live Messenger, Yahoo Messenger would be the best platform for you with the added benefit of Google Talk interoperability. If you have more contacts on Google and AIM, then Google Talk would be the better choice with the benefit of integrating your Yahoo contacts too.
On the other hand, AOL has no intentions of providing support for massive interoperability between the different networks. They believe that the majority of AIM users do not want this type of support.
Personally, I think interoperability would be a great thing for instant messaging; it would make things so much easier. However, I do not think that it will ever happen. Companies want users to pick their service for a reason. If I could instant message yahoo, gtalk and MSN from my AIM account — there would be no reason to specifically pick AIM as an instant messaging server.
What do you think? Will IM interoperability ever become a reality?