Just heard from Tech-Buzz, that the GTalk interface built inside Gmail has got Emoticons and Group Chat. There's a nice looking screenshot with the post. The emoticons have existed in GTalk, but it's been only Character-oriented and didn't have the icons.
This was a much needed addition to GTalk since every other popular IM has got emoticons with icons bulit into it. The new group chat is also interesting since IM also involves some group discussion at times. But like Thilak from tech-buzz mentions, only the web-interface gets the emoticons and not the GTalk client. I somehow like the GTalk thats built into the Gmail's interface and find it a very nifty IM that needs no installation. It's part of the Google web world, where the desktop is seconday and web-apps is Google's first child. So, I was excited to use the emoticons in the web-interface, but was sad that my account didn't have the emoticons. :(
Hope I get the emoticon icons in a few days and can share my facial expressions in the dull world of text IM!! I'm sure the GTalk client will get this feature pretty soon.