I noticed that you wrote Also, we're talking conversation here, not characters. and realized from your first sentence that you were familiar with the simplified character problem with the word "Gan". However despite your statement that "Gan" would never be used for "it's nice to talk to you." we can't know whether it was or was not used in the reported case because, understandably enough, the very short "Network World" article doesn't provide the actual words that were used. Maybe the speaker did use "Gan".
And although "we're talking conversation here, not characters", my first thought was that the translation software did something like:
1. Capture sound of word
2. Determine what character the word corresponds to
3. Translate that character
In which case the "collapsed" simplified character problem would indeed be pertinent.