While I believe it is a smart move for Google to work with Skype-owner eBay for click-to-call functionality within ads that run on Google, there's another side to this deal that I'm wondering how many other Google and Skype-watchers will pick up on.
What this deal tells me not so much between the lines, is that by working up this deal with Skype, Google is signalling relatively modest plans for Google Talk.
If Google Talk were to be a fully-armed Internet calling service with aggressive plans to compete against Skype, Gizmo Project Yahoo! Messenger as well as the VoIP pure plays like Vonage by means of offering a suite of PSTN calling plans, then why would Google do this full deal with Skype?
Yes, I know that Google Talk click-to-call will be available on eBay as well as, of course, Google ads. And, as the announcement notes, Skype and GT are exploring ways to make text chat interoperable.
While that does sound like a good deal for all parties, it doesn't reinforce my main point.
My main point being that in doing deals with a rival that is farther along the PC-to-PSTN infrastructure curve than Google Talk shows any signs of wanting to be, Google is signalling they only want Google Talk to primarily be an IM application-and not get into Internet telephony full-bore.