Hangouts does some things well, but letting you know when someone new is trying to contact you is not one of them. Google is rolling out several new invitation options to Hangouts that will make things much clearer. What's more, it looks like they're already live in the Android app. Read More
Today, both of Facebook's current apps have been updated to prepare for the arrival of Facebook Home. The main app merely added an extra permission that Home will eventually use. However, the real fun came to Messenger, which now has the ability to pop out Chat Heads, regardless of if you're using the replacement launcher.
As you may recall from the Facebook Home launch event, chat heads are little bubbles that float over whatever you're doing and allow you to jump straight into a conversation no matter where you are in the OS. Just tap your friend's face and an IM window appears. Read More
We've been seeing leak after leak about Google's rumored unified messaging service. Now, as more details get seemingly confirmed and and we even get a look at the possibly near-finished app, clearly this is the time for Google to acquire a competing IM service, right? Well, not so much, according to AllThingsD. As it turns out, Mountain View is not about to buy WhatsApp, a company that makes a product that Google is currently nearly done building itself. Just in case you were wondering.
This contradicts rumors that WhatsApp would be selling to Google for close to $1 billion. Read More
Alright, Google. It's time to stop leaving your VoIP service to languish on the vine. Facebook has released a double-whammy of big news bits. For starters, today the social network is rolling out an update to its Messenger app that will allow users to send each other short, recorded audio clips. It's voicemail for the 21st century, if such a thing can even exist without being horrible. And, really, this sounds like it's not.
Perhaps more interestingly, though, is that Facebook is also testing free VoIP calling in Canada right now. This is a huge deal, as it competes directly with Google Talk. Read More
Cerulean Studios, creator of the popular cross-platform IM client Trillian, recently announced that all versions of the aforementioned product would transition to a free-with-ads model, as opposed to a paid download. Even though this change took place about a week ago, it looks like the Market listing has finally been updated to reflect accordingly.
Users are still able to subscribe to a paid service that is ad-free and adds new features, like the ability to view chat histories online. Users who've paid in the past will have their purchases honored, and will be able to transfer them over to other platforms. Read More
After a bunch of relatively uninteresting premium apps given out for free in Amazon's Android Appstore, today's offering is really quite refreshing. Users of the desktop version of Trillian will instantly recognize their beloved multi-network IM client's logo, and those new to it will find its features quite impressive:
- support for AIM, Facebook, Live Messenger, Yahoo! Messenger, ICQ, and, of course, Google Talk
- Trillian synchronizes contacts, avatars, statuses, and accounts between Android, Mac, Windows, and Web clients
- push notifications for those on Android 2.2+
- multiple chat windows, emoticons, and more
While Trillian is no longer my client of choice on the desktop (Digsby took that spot), I must say that if you're looking for a great multi-network IM client on Android, it's hard to go wrong with this [normally $4.99] offering from Cerulean Studios. Read More
Those of you familiar with PC gaming will no doubt be well aware of Valve Corporation's digital distribution platform Steam. Well, member PoliticalGamer over at the Steampowered User Forum just got back from a trip of a lifetime to Valve HQ in Bellevue, WA, and he brought back some interesting news.
In a discussion with Valve co-founder and frontman Gabe Newell, PoliticalGamer caught wind of Valve's interest in expanding its Steam operations onto both iOS and Android. While he had no direct quote, the paraphrasing below gives us some hope:
he said they were looking into the iOS/Android platform for possible expansions with Steam
It might seem like an obvious move for Valve given the recent explosion in mobile gaming, but it's nice to hear from the man himself that Valve do have their eyes on portable systems. Read More