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Evidence suggests Apple could bring iMessage support to iChat in OS X Lion

post #1 of 22
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Code found in the iChat application for Mac OS X 10.7 Lion has led to speculation that Apple could add integration with its forthcoming iMessage application in iOS 5.

Inside the framework of Lion's iChat software are two new properties, related to delivery of messages, and verifying whether a message has been read. These features are not yet natively found in iChat, but are major components of iMessage, which will be a part of iOS 5 for iPhone, iPad and iPod touch.

The discovery of strings of code for "timeDelivered" and "timeRead" has led MacRumors to speculate that Apple could eventually bring support for its iMessage protocol to iChat. Currently, iMessage is only officially announced to work between iOS devices.

Of course, Apple first introduced its FaceTime video chat standard with the iPhone 4, but eventually brought a special FaceTime for Mac application to the Mac App Store earlier this year. That software allows iOS and Mac users to video chat with the FaceTime protocol.

Based on that, it would not be a stretch for Apple to bring iMessage support to Mac, whether through its existing iChat software, or with another standalone application like was done with FaceTime.

iMessage is a new proprietary chat client that will debut this fall with the launch of iOS 5 for the iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. It allows iOS-to-iOS chat and sharing of media in a manner similar to Research in Motion's BlackBerry messenger.

The iMessage software is based on the same push technology that Apple developed in-house, and has used for iOS application notifications, push e-mail and contacts. It uses an IM-like system to deliver messages and notifications to users on their mobile devices.



In addition, for iPhone users, iMessage will also replace the native Messages application and handle text messaging as well. Both Apple's iMessages and traditional cellular text messages will be sent and received through the software.

When Apple officially announced iMessage as part of iOS 5 in June, the reveal was said to have caught wireless carriers off guard. Fees associated with text messaging and picture messaging are a very profitable part of doing business for wireless providers.

With iMessage, users of iOS devices can be notified when their friend is typing them a message, and will also be able to see if a message has been received. Users will know if a message is unread with a "waiting for delivery" prompt, and iMessages are distinguished from regular text messages by being displayed in blue rather than green.
post #2 of 22
it will also effect the people over at IM+ and Beejive too.
post #3 of 22
All they need to do next is combine FaceTime with iChat and roll it out for all iOS devices.

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post #4 of 22
1) Slash ain't real.

2) I figure this will get updated in Lion around the time iSO 5.0 is released.
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post #5 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

All they need to do next is combine FaceTime with iChat and roll it out for all iOS devices.

Yeah, I've found it a bit odd that FaceTime and iChat are separate apps, as are Mail, Contacts and Calendar. And then you have iTunes.

While FaceTime doesn't get used much, iMessages will be a killer feature I'm sure. Looking forward to doing Whatsapp, Apple style.
post #6 of 22
Not having iChat tie into iMessage would be a major lost opportunity. In fact, I don't know why they would:
a) release iMessage without the tie-in with iChat, as it's a logical step and greatly enhances the feature for both Macs and iDevices
b) even have iMessage at all when they could deliver the same functionality as 'iChat' to iOS devices?
post #7 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robodude View Post

Yeah, I've found it a bit odd that FaceTime and iChat are separate apps, as are Mail, Contacts and Calendar. And then you have iTunes.

As an Outlook user at work I'm glad that Mail, Contacts and Calendar are seperate on OS X.
post #8 of 22
Soon I'll have a big problem: which chatting client shall I use, out of so many?! I'm actually already having this problem...
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post #9 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robodude View Post

Yeah, I've found it a bit odd that FaceTime and iChat are separate apps, as are Mail, Contacts and Calendar. And then you have iTunes.

While FaceTime doesn't get used much, iMessages will be a killer feature I'm sure. Looking forward to doing Whatsapp, Apple style.

Mail, iCal, and Address book serve different functions, ergo different apps. iTunes is the problem here. iTunes should be at least four different apps (Media Library/Playback, device management, store, and Home Sharing as a background system service). But FaceTime and iChat, being instant-communication apps, should indeed be integrated, and rolled with iMessage.
post #10 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbarriault View Post

Mail, iCal, and Address book serve different functions, ergo different apps. iTunes is the problem here. iTunes should be at least four different apps (Media Library/Playback, device management, store, and Home Sharing as a background system service). But FaceTime and iChat, being instant-communication apps, should indeed be integrated, and rolled with iMessage.

Agreed, and called iConnect or something delightfully lame like that.
post #11 of 22
I think ALL chat services has taken a severe hit from Facebook. I'd say FaceTime too took a severe hit when Facebook chose Skype. I wouldn't be surprised if there was a Facebook OS based on HTML 5 for phones in the making, with Phone, Facebook, Skype, Browser and Facebook apps. It doesn't have to be the best.. just a package with all the familiar features that people know.
I'm not sure imessages (which I think is a stupid name) will help any of this.
post #12 of 22
OK, you can all bust on me for this one all you want, but this would be the one feature I'd upgrade to Lion (from SL) for. I have yet to see a feature in Lion I'd need or want until this.
post #13 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by mbarriault View Post

Mail, iCal, and Address book serve different functions, ergo different apps. iTunes is the problem here. iTunes should be at least four different apps (Media Library/Playback, device management, store, and Home Sharing as a background system service). But FaceTime and iChat, being instant-communication apps, should indeed be integrated, and rolled with iMessage.

Bingo. iTunes should definitely be split up.

If I want to change which calendars I sync with my iPhone, I use an mp3 player? Ah, but iTunes isn't an mp3 player anymore. Still, needing iTunes to select which photo albums sync between Aperture 3 and my iPhone is silly.

The iPhone deserves its own sync/store app. Get all of that clutter out of iTunes.

On the other hand, why do I need a DVD player app? CDs play in iTunes. Music videos play in iTunes. But movies do not? Some of these decisions seem so arbitrary.
post #14 of 22
If you ask me I would keep the apps separate.

However, I would "downgrade" iChat to chat/message only and upgrade FaceTime to be able to do video conferencing and share presentations etc.
post #15 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by 2oh1 View Post

On the other hand, why do I need a DVD player app? CDs play in iTunes. Music videos play in iTunes. But movies do not? Some of these decisions seem so arbitrary.

I'm sure there are licensing reasons for it as well as iTunes first being used for audio. Remember Mac OS offered native playback of protected DVDs in the OS. Changing it up now when DVDs are on the way out seems like a pointless addition.
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post #16 of 22
It's about time.
post #17 of 22
Release it on all possible platforms and kill SMS once and for all.
post #18 of 22
Quote:
When Apple officially announced iMessage as part of iOS 5 in June, the reveal was said to have caught wireless carriers off guard. Fees associated with text messaging and picture messaging are a very profitable part of doing business for wireless providers.

Providers make money off text messages? Must be an American thing.

Text messages are given away with the sunday paper on network providers over here. 5000 ("unlimited") free texts a month included with my dirt cheap £30 a month contract ($47) doesn't strike me as a big money maker.

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post #19 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by Robodude View Post

Yeah, I've found it a bit odd that FaceTime and iChat are separate apps, as are Mail, Contacts and Calendar. And then you have iTunes.

While FaceTime doesn't get used much, iMessages will be a killer feature I'm sure. Looking forward to doing Whatsapp, Apple style.

How do we know FaceTime doesn't get used much? I use it quite a bit myself.
post #20 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by benanderson89 View Post

Providers make money off text messages? Must be an American thing.

Text messages are given away with the sunday paper on network providers over here. 5000 ("unlimited") free texts a month included with my dirt cheap £30 a month contract ($47) doesn't strike me as a big money maker.

$47 a month. 20M customers. 12 months a year. Almost $5B a year. Not a big money maker?
post #21 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by benanderson89 View Post

Providers make money off text messages? Must be an American thing.

No.

Providers make a killing off of SMS. SMS's are sent in otherwise unused frames in the GSM network communication, meaning that they are sent anyway and are therefore effectively free for the providers to send. Whatever they charge you, is 100% profit.
Quote:
Text messages are given away with the sunday paper on network providers over here. 5000 ("unlimited") free texts a month included with my dirt cheap £30 a month contract ($47) doesn't strike me as a big money maker.

See above. Handling SMS messages doesn't cost your provider anything at all.

You may think you are being smart and getting a good deal, but your telecoms provider is always a bit smarter and is making a killing off of you.

.tsooJ
post #22 of 22
Quote:
Originally Posted by gyorpb View Post

No.

Providers make a killing off of SMS. SMS's are sent in otherwise unused frames in the GSM network communication, meaning that they are sent anyway and are therefore effectively free for the providers to send. Whatever they charge you, is 100% profit.See above. Handling SMS messages doesn't cost your provider anything at all.

You may think you are being smart and getting a good deal, but your telecoms provider is always a bit smarter and is making a killing off of you.

.tsooJ

I fail to see how they make any real money when I didn't pay anything extra to get the 5000 texts b:
The only reason my bill is £30 a month is because of the Internet allowance. 3GB and Tethering. Internet is where they'll be making the money, and iMessage will use, you guessed it, the internet! An SMS is 140 characters long. So thats 140 bytes. If you use the full 140 in every message then all you need is 10 messages and you've hit 1.4KiB - 100 messages and you've went over 1MiB - I know people who easily hit 1000 messages easily in a week, and many contracts only have 500MB or 1GB of Internet at £25 a month. Seem rather cheap when I've got 3GB for £30. Along comes an internet based messenger on the most popular handset on the market and the Networks (at least the ones in the UK who don't charge, or charge very little extra for text message add ons) will rejoice at the mad prices you pay for Internet allowance.

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