Trillian for Android Update Introduces Continuous Chat Feature [Video]


Trillian has long been one of the best multi-protocol instant messaging clients for personal computers – a personal favorite of mine for a while, actually – so you can imagine my excitement when I heard they were heading for an Android version of their application.

That’s not the story here, though. (I know how many of you are just dying to hear my personal raves. Mi apologias.) They’ve updated Trillian for Android to build 30 that adds a suite of features called “Continuous Chat”.

Continuous Chat is aiming to blur your chatting experience when going from the PC to the smartphone so that your conversations are never interrupted. (Pretty much how Google Talk on the desktop version of Gmail and on Android seem to do things. The difference is that they’ve done a lot of cool things to ensure this will work right no matter what. I think it’s best to let Trillian themselves describe it to you:

  • Trillian shares chats between all devices in realtime. Hop off the home computer and continue chatting on the couch via the family iPad. Seamlessly switch between your mobile phone and work computer throughout your work day.
  • Trillian supports optional cloud-based storage of chats. A crashed hard drive won’t take years of chatting history with it, and new devices are instantly initialized and up-to-date with your chat history – even mobile phones!
  • Trillian uses presence technology to know where you’re active and makes notification decisions accordingly. For example, stay on Trillian for Android all day at work and you’ll receive no C2DM notifications, buzzes, or sounds because you’re active on your desktop.
  • Trillian works out-of-the-box on all major IM services that support multiple points of presence, regardless of their particular nuances. For example, some services send messages to devices marked ‘online’ and not ‘away’, and others target messages to individual devices. The result can mean fragmented or one-sided conversations depending on the device. Trillian deals with all of this for you and keeps your chat windows tidy and sane.
  • Trillian keeps track of read and unread messages, so your desktop isn’t blinking when you return to it after a day of chatting on your mobile. Even cooler, if you walk away from your desktop and someone starts messaging you, your iPhone will update its badge count as soon as it realizes your desktop was left idle with N unread messages.

[Trillian, Android market]

Quentyn Kennemer
The "Google Phone" sounded too awesome to pass up, so I bought a G1. The rest is history. And yes, I know my name isn't Wilson.

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  1. Does it do MUC (MultiUser Chat Conference) on Jabber accounts?

  2. Speaking of Apple, the $499 iPad 2 is lookin like a better option than the $799 XOOM right now.

  3. Interesting.
    Although I hate the way people use the term “cloud” based storage, like it’s some type of new technology. ONLINE storage has been around since the dawn of the internet.

  4. Google Voice does this.

  5. @PimpStrong .. only if price is your concern. The iPad2 only added a dual processor and is a bit thinner. So what?! No HDMI out, 3G only, no SD slot (keep those carry-around extras), a whole 512MB ram (wow! my phone has more)… no improvements making it worth buying one. Wait for more Android Tablets to be available through the year.

  6. @ RJ – I’m with you, but thats why I specifically said “right now”. Until a WiFi Honeycomb tab is in the stores the iPad 2 will not be phased.

    I’m not worried about HDMI out or SD cards and apparently the 512 must be sufficient considering Apple didnt upgrade it. Only technical advantage the XOOM has to me is higher screen res which in 2011 should be kind of a standard. Fail on Apple’s part.

  7. Urm, according to the launch comms it does have HDMI out through the use of a $39 adapter.

  8. @Will: True. Google Voice has that ability to say ‘I want to switch phones’ where you can bounce your call to a new endpoint without having to actually end the call and call someone back. That’s actually a pretty decent comparison; our goal was not to provide just ‘the incoming messages are mirrored to all connected devices’ that a lot of IM systems do, but to provide an IM equivalent to that Google Voice behavior, so that you can switch any conversation to any given device seamlessly, along with unread state and so on.

    @RJ: Not to nitpick, but according to the keynote and product page they /did/ actually add full HDMI out capability. Requires a dock connector/adapter, but it’s there. Other points are valid, though. ;)

  9. Appreciating the use of a G1

  10. Continuous Chat DOES NOT WORK ON YAHOO AT ALL. That’s the only reason I grabbed this, so don’t waste $5 like I did if this feature is compelling and you make heavy use of Yahoo IM.

  11. Update: doesn’t seem to work with GTalk either. Doesn’t sign you out like Yahoo does, but the functionality from the video just isn’t there.

  12. does it have a widget?

  13. @Noah: What setup are you using? What setup are you using? All the mobile versions (Android, Blackberry, iPhone, web) support continuous client right now, but ONLY Trillian 5.0 build 30 on Windows supports it on the desktop side. Trillian 4.x on Windows doesn’t support continuous client; it’s a feature unique to the 5.x tree. (As for OS X, the build supporting continuous client will be out shortly; it’s in final testing right now; that’ll get both desktop platforms fully in sync.)

    With regards to Yahoo, the Yahoo servers will always log one or the other out; Yahoo just doesn’t allow you to connect more than one client to an account at a time, so the only way around that would be to proxy every Yahoo connection through the servers (which isn’t practical if you also want to support file transfer and such).

    Still, continuous client will keep the Yahoo conversation in sync, so you can reconnect Yahoo from another device and still have the history intact. Google Talk should be working completely, however, which is why I’m curious what your setup is. If you’re seeing it just plain not work between Android and Trillian on Windows, please head over to the forums and write up a bug report; it works for all the testers, so if you’ve got a broken case, we’d definitely like to find and fix it! :)

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