An ever increasing number of interconnected embedded devices, or Machine-to-Machine (M2M) systems, are changing the way we live, work and play. M2M systems as a whole are typically characterized by the diversity in both the type of device and type of network access technology employed, and such systems are often still today task-specific and built for just one specific application. Smart lighting, remote monitoring and control of all kinds of consumer devices and industrial equipment, safety and security monitoring devices and smart health and fitness products, exemplify this revolution of intercommunicating machines. However, the differences in communication technologies and data formats among such devices and systems are leading to a huge complexity explosion problem and a strongly fragmented market, with no true interoperability. Due to these problems, the full potential of M2M technology has yet to be fulfilled. In this paper, we examine the suitability of the Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP) and experiment with its potential to rise to the challenge of machine-to-machine communications and meet the needs of modern pervasive applications. Experimental implementations and some proof-of-concept solutions are also presented.