Google needs to open up the GTalk beta, its been months and still no one can use this unless you go through the hassle of getting a Gmail account, which is also still in beta?? I think this client has a great deal of promise but I never use it because nobody I know has it.
Speaking of timing, check out IM Federation. It looks to me like Mr. Michael Robertson is making nice with Google and visa versa. Looking closer we can see that the domain is registered to Michael. Gtalk appears to be on the federated IM client track as well as it is listed Pending. I wonder if this means they will create a federated architecture much like Gizmo or if Google will use a third party service to help them federate with other services.
At any rate, federated IM seems to be gaining momentum, which is good for all users.