So, what’s new? The big new feature is buddy icons, or whatever Google chooses to call them. In your IM client, click the little image of a torso and head to change it to any of 30 pictures, or use any picture by dropping it in your
My Documents\My Pictures\Google Talk folder. Pictures must be 96×96 pixel bitmaps.
Another new feature is that you can select a Chat Theme, that will determine how conversations look. You hit the Appearance section in Settings, and you have five themes to choose from: Classic, Bubble (the one in the screenshot), Serene (light red and blue bars with names in them, right aligned, while chat text remains left-aligned), Swiss (plain black lettering and single black seperator lines) and Ping Pong. All the themes, except Ping Pong, come with and without the contact’s picture. Ping is a plain theme that puts one chatter aligned on the left, picture and all, and one aligned on the right.
Another new feature: A contact card appears when you rollover someone in the buddy list, like in Gmail. You can see that in the screenshot. Right now, this contains no additional information, and is kind of useless, unless you want to see a bigger version of the person’s picture.
The new version is 188.8.131.52, the previous I had installed was 184.108.40.206.
Other minor changes: New Add and View buttons, the latter with sorting and interface options; alert have close buttons (and dissapear when you right-click on them); links in chats are not underlined until you rollover.