The until now beta tested voice feature of the First Look client has gone into the main client. Thus it is enabled everywhere and now mainstream.
The use of voice is always going to be optional, and estate owners can disable it, if wanted, but it's now there and without any extra charge at all for the sim owners, as it seems.
While some couldn't await the arrival of this feature into the main client any longer, others are still sceptical about it and/or don't want to use it at all. Consider it working under Mac OS X and Windows, but not under Linux yet.
It's simply not working under Linux because the proprietary binary that's needed to connect to the servers of Vivox is still non existant, meaning what you've got under Linux there is an empty shell so far.
I've spent today again some time on the voice beta test grid. It has been quite fun and interesting to see how voice is going to change the SL experience.
It's also a good way to see the Lindens live; no wonder, since it's beta and only under 10 regions are online, you can see them there. I saw Pathfinder Linden and another Linden, Monroe Linden, even used voice and talked with us a little! Great!
So, basically when you're going online on the beta grid it's first looking where the crowd is. There are perhaps 30-40 people online the same time, and they use to flock around, well, that's my experience so far.
Today was also interesting since we've seen an avatar from the company that is providing the voice technology, Vivox, Rockin Randall, who talked with us and answered some questions to us. Nice guy and some very interesting insights, for sure this is going to scale at great lengths, if necessary!
Well, here's also a little snapshot to show the speech indicators in action, just click on the thumbnail to see the big picture.