Here at AP, we rely on HipChat for our internal chatroom(s). Given that, this news is probably more exciting for us than anyone else, but we're sharing it anyway. The HipChat team just released a new beta version of its app to the Play Store, and to put it simply, it's amazing. Compared to the current "stable" build, which ironically isn't very stable at all, the new beta has already proven itself to be the superior choice. So, really, the beta is more stable than the stable build which is more like a beta. How's that for confusing?

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The real deal here is the interface: the app now uses Google's design guidelines, so it's Holo-ed out to the max. The colorscheme, the actionbar, it's all there. So not only is it functional, but it also look great. And everyone likes good-looking things that actually work.

This new version also fixes a lot of the bugs/missing features from the existing build. Firstly, the "remember my password" option actually works in the beta. You can also send photos (and other files) directly to the chat, as well as search the lobby in real-time. I'm sure most of that is just a jumble of words to those who haven't used HC before, but for those of us who rely on it, that jumble of words is beautiful. It means good things! As a whole, HC beta makes all of us here at AP pretty damn happy.

Thanks for the update and all the hard work that's already gone into it, HC team. We're digging it so far!

Cameron Summerson
Cameron is a self-made geek, Android enthusiast, horror movie fanatic, musician, and cyclist. When he's not pounding keys here at AP, you can find him spending time with his wife and kids, plucking away on the 6-string, spinning on the streets, or watching The Texas Chainsaw Massacre on repeat.

  • Michael

    what makes this better than Groupme?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      HipChat is more like IRC on crack than something like Groupme. It's a fantastic team communication tool.

      HipChat was picked up by Atlassian last year and had enough funds to hire a dedicated Android dev. This is the product of that endeavor.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/author/ron-amadeo/ Ron Amadeo
      • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

        How could I forget to mention that?

  • Mapplegate

    How does this compare against What'sApp?

    • Elemetrix

      Quick glance at the screenshots shows it allows sending more file types for one thing

      • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

        You can send any file as far as I know.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      https://www.hipchat.com/compare (no whatsapp there, but it's not exactly a whatsapp competitor).

  • http://the-jade-domain.com Jaime J. Denizard

    So why not just download an IRC app? Not trying to put you down or anything, I'm actually curious as to what makes this app appealing.

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      Lots of reasons. User administration, copy-pasting of images/clipboard, very easy file sharing, meme emoticons (yes, this makes all the difference http://hipchat-emoticons.nyh.name/) , API, @mentions that ping you via email if you're not there, chat history with search, history of files and links shared. It's just a fantastic solution for running internal communications. I far prefer it to IRC.

      If you have designers, they will especially love the ease of sharing images.

      Just check out this https://www.hipchat.com/compare.

      They have a free plan too, I believe.

      • http://the-jade-domain.com Jaime J. Denizard

        Thanks for the reply, I'm going to check this out! :)

  • drbobb

    So, why would I want this if nobody I know has ever heard of it?

    • http://www.androidpolice.com/ Artem Russakovskii

      You want this if you have a team of people who need to communicate. You wouldn't get this otherwise. Think of it as an internal communication tool.

  • Jim

    still doesn't work over a proxy

  • wbarahona

    holo-ed, kinda late tho... material design guys