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Nokia blesses Google Talk - report

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A device that no one uses will feature a chat service with no users, the Wall Street Journal reports today.

The device is Nokia's next Wi-Fi tablet, and the chat client is Google Talk, the IM service which is capable of making SIP voice calls. To be announced Tuesday, the hardware will be Nokia's successor to the Linux-based 770, which crept onto the market late last year. It's designed as a mobile web browsing device, rather than a phone or a PDA, that fits perfectly into a pair of speedos.

VoIP was always on the roadmap for 2006, Nokia said a year ago when it announced the 770. It's much more of a significant win, however, for Google, which at last finds an OEM to take its neglected and late-to-market IM chat client.

The 770 has found an enthusiastic, but very limited, audience of Debian developers, many of whom have received one from Nokia. But after the initial rush of enthusiasm, we're still not sure anyone has bought one. Or even whether that was intention. Nokia executives hoped that ISPs in the competitive European broadband markets would offer 770s to punters.

For now, Nokia will be pleased it has been well received by the Linux community. And we're just delighted that someone has squeezed a server operating system into a consumer device designed to display a few angle brackets.

More significant than the news with the magic 'G' word in it, is the disclosure that the price point for the Nokia 770's successor remains the same at $399.

That's $100 more than a Wi-Fi capable Palm TX. It's brutal out there. ®

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