"He didn't say it, but i could hear it in his voice"

Linden Lab is planning to integrate voice communication inside SL. Today meetings in second life leaves no space to concentrate about anything else than your chat log. But with the ability to use our voice the experience and usability of SL would be considerably enhanced. Perhaps we might even sometime be able to automatically display our facial expression, and body language.

There is no doubt that chat communication has it's disadvantages. We need to express ourselves very clear and might even then not be understood. Furthermore important linguistic terms such as humor and sarcasm are hard to interpret. In general we need to keep to the facts or thoroughly explain our thoughts and feelings behind our message.

A lot of this would be considerably easier if we had the ability to express ourselves in sound. Of course we would still not be able to smell or touch each other. However we would experience a greatly enhanced communication. We would be able to look past our chat log and discover the 3D environment while communicating. This would enable presentations, conferences, classes and meetings to be much more useful in Second Life.

Ad last voice communication would allow us to lead fluid conversations where we can explain ourselves quicker and more thoroughly.

In the future i expect to combine voice communication and Second Life myself. This is also going to be of huge benefit to businesses as IBM planning to use Second Life as a virtual meeting place. Further of i could imagine that face expressions and body language in Second Life will be directly connected to your real life identity. But i believe that chat messages will still have its own advantages.

Know more:
Embracing the Inevitable - Official Linden Blog