Anyone else wish iChat was more worthwhile?

in iPod + iTunes + AppleTV edited January 2014
Sure, the AV chatting is awesome and top notch, if both people have a Mac with an iSight. And the interface is clean and simple. But if we're talking about chatting alone, iChat just feels like it's incomplete. I don't know what it is but there really isn't a great AIM program for Mac yet. iChat still feels to underdeveloped to me. Adium doesn't work properly with the Address Book. Forget AOL instant messenger, it's ugly as f*ck and slow! Maybe I'm on crack but what is your opinion?


  • Reply 1 of 9
    Hmm. I used to use fire and liked it a lot, except it was buggy. I tried iChat once and did not like it that much. But, about a month ago, I decided I would try it again and it has since become my IM program of choice. I like how the conversation is on both "sides"... It helps me avoid confusion. I do not like how it handles being away, not sending a message for it, but I got a plugin (cannot remember the name however) that does auto responders. But, you can only have one. I would like to see Apple include support for this. I guess the thing I like about it is it has a "clean" feeling. They COULD improve message logging, however. (Aka take a hint from FIRE!)
  • Reply 2 of 9
    I definitely agree about the way it handles away messages! I hate that is doesn't send them. I like the fact that it shows a little red aqua dot next to someone who is away and that you can read their away message right in the buddy list though. And I also don't like the lack of message logging. I think iChat could take a few hints from Adium 2.0, then it would be perfect. I really like the tabbed windows in Adium. Just wished it weren't so buggy. I will probably end up getting tired of Adium and go back to iChat soon. Fact of the matter is, it's probably the best out of the other' just feels like it's missing some things.
  • Reply 3 of 9
    aquaticaquatic Posts: 5,602member
    Yes it should at least have an option to send away messages. It would be nice if Talk worked with the official AIM client on PC and Mac, whenever AOL finally adds it. As well as video, when AOL finally adds it.

    My thread here has a LOT of features for Apple to implement:

    Suffice to say that iApps really hit their prime when they go 3.0. iChat can only get better. I'm sure Apple's aware of most of the features that need to be added.

    The way you sign in is stupid. The lack of a block button is stupid.

    Using multiple SNs at the same time would be cracker, jack. Tabs too. Profile editing, well, duh. The buddy list viewing needs GROUPS at least as an option.

    I'm sure it will get there. If I get a DV cam this Christmas that would be exxxxcellent... However I highly doubt that until next Christmas when they double digits, like digital cameras have become. Perhaps my roommate will get one.
  • Reply 4 of 9
    The new beta aim for windows beta has video chat. Is this compatable with ichat? I really hope so, bc right now an isight is useless to me.

    Also, I really wish aim sent away messages and had better support for profiles/away messages. Maybe some of the adium people should work for apple. ;-)
  • Reply 5 of 9
    aquaticaquatic Posts: 5,602member
    I hope the new AIM video will work with iChat, does anyone know? Apple uses standards, and AOL let them in the tent unlike any other company. Somehow I have a bad feeling it won't though. I mean where the hell is Talk in AIM X?! It was in the OS 9 version years ago.
  • Reply 6 of 9
    I'm going to have to echo what pretty much everyone else here says, have an auto reply feature, not just an away message. I think that Apple omitted it because as an iChat user, we can read other's away messages without sending them anything, so for one reason or another they think AIM can do the same thing with the ease that iChat does. Other than that, I can't say enough about how great the program is. Easy to use, I love not having to have it open to be online, it's really easy to select away messages, and the "available" messages that other iChat users can see. It's an awesome program with very few shortcomings, but those shortcomings are very apparent.
  • Reply 7 of 9
    "The new beta aim for windows beta has video chat. Is this compatable with ichat? I really hope so, bc right now an isight is useless to me."

    I'm not sure, but I believe the AIM beta uses Netmeeting for Video (not iChat compatible). You can still use your isight for chat with Windows users using ohphoneX or Squidcam. You can also record video with gcam or lots of other shareware/freeware. So your isight won't be useless
  • Reply 8 of 9
    I use iChat pretty much strictly for A/V chat. My "text only" chat app of choice is Fire. Some people will think I'm nuts, but it's the little things that matter to me, and Fire still has the edge. For example, you can "dock" chat windows and the Buddy List to the sides of the screen (example: you drag a chat window halfway off the screen, and it will slide back until it is flush with the edge of the screen). I LOVE that feature. I keep all my chat windows arranged around the edge of my monitors, and I can just "throw" them there without having to manually place them. Clever, and thoughtful.

    Fire allows you to have timestamps on each and every single message, not just on groups of messages.

    Fire allows multiple IM protocols.

    FIre allows me to quickly see ALL of my previous, stored conversations at a glance, and even search through them (although the search feature could be seriously beefed up).

    Fire lets me keep chat windows at a particular size. Sure, it's cute that iChat will now expand the text input box as you type to accommodate your message, but that's too cute by about half. I don't want my window constantly expanding and reducing. Just let me keep my nice, LITTLE chat window exactly where I want it, and PLEASE don't take my damn CPU cycles stupidly redrawing the window with cutesy animations. Or at least give me the ability to fix the text input box size and turn that other crap off.

    Fire isn't brushed metal (dear Lord, I'm getting tired of that scheme).

    Fire flashes its icon at me when I have a new message. iChat only seems able to bounce its icon at me, taking up valuable CPU cycles (damn bouncing dock....). And don't talk to me about sounds. I don't want to hear chimes 600 times announcing that I have new messages. A subtle visual cue is great.

    And, well, you get the idea.

    I agree with the original poster. While iChat is nice (and the iChat AV/iSight combination ALMOST makes up for all flaws), it does seem like a half-baked work in progress. The ease of adding and cropping buddy pics is great. The inability to be able to sort your buddies into categories sucks. The Address Book integration can be weird (ever try to write to a Buddy's .Mac account instead of their AIM account if they have both in their Address Book entry? It's an exercise in pain).

    So yeah, bring on iChat 3. My iSight and I will be waiting.
  • Reply 9 of 9
    gongon Posts: 2,437member
    Instant messaging is funny...

    it is so easy technically, yet I've never seen an implementation that was anywhere close to perfect.

    I used ICQ for a long time. Then one day it upgraded itself without asking me. The difference was having an ad banner.

    About that time I also realized ICQ had a bad, bad case of featuritis. There were a million half-baked features, random chat, etc.

    Then Trillian. No features other than instant messaging (good), supports ICQ, AOL, MSN, IRC, Yahoo Chat. No ads. Has slightly buggy UI (they should've just left out the skins and done a good, simple implementation). Doesn't automatically reconnect after connection goes down and up again.

    One thing I'd want an IM to do, whenever you're chatting with someone, you shouldn't have to "open a log" separately to know what has been said before, you should be able to just scroll up as far as you like in the same window and get a full history right to the first thing you've ever said through the IM.

    Also, you should have a full search feature that searches all your logs and you can give various parameters for the search like nickname, content (string), date and time.

    A special case of this search would be "last 10 URLs posted".
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