Google may bring video chat to Android with GIPS purchase

One reason I’m a fan of Android is that I know Google will continue to pump resources into it. The search giant is making a cash bid for Global IP Solutions and this may eventually lead to native video chatting for that little, green robot.

Google is offering about $68.2 million for the company, which specializes in real-time audio and video communication over the Internet. There are natural synergies here because the search giant also owns YouTube (which is now streaming over 2 billion videos a day) but what we care about at IntoMobile is that GIPS has also developed a real-time video-chatting engine for Android apps. The GIPS VideoEngine for Android enables app creators to integrate real-time video conferencing without having to hassle with bandwidth, compression or other issues (check out the video above for a quick demo).

In its official announcement, Google doesn’t mention much about the mobile possibilities but we can always read between the lines.

“GIPS’ technology provides high quality, real-time audio and video over an IP network, and we’re looking forward to working with the GIPS team at Google to continue innovating for the Web platform,” said Rian Liebenberg, engineering director at Google, in a prepared statement.

The move comes as video-chatting features are becoming an increasingly hot topic in the U.S. market. Yes, you readers in Europe, Japan and Korea can laugh at us all you want but mobile video-chatting looks to be the next big thing with U.S. smartphones.

The next iPhone will reportedly have a front-facing camera and you know Apple will be pushing video calls in its ads. My next phone, the EVO 4G, also has a front-facing camera and it utilizes Qik for two-way video chats. Check out our hands-on video of the EVO’s cool chatting features below for a closer look.

Native video-chatting capabilities in Android would be cool but I’m still not sure how popular it will be. How say you, IntoMobile readers? Is video chatting a killer feature that can sway your purchasing decision or is it just marketing bluster?

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