Written on: 04/04/2001 by DanC.
- Ability to see when buddy is typing a message
- Server rarely down
- Very nice, professional and easy to use UI
- Made by MS, so intergrates with Windows well
- Need to give permission for people to see your online status
- File transfers unreliable
- Voice chat sometimes doesnt work
- Every time an upgrade is released, they get more useless features
Microsoft's Instant messaging service is the best I've ever used, despite a few problems. One of the major advantages of this program is that it is possible to see when your buddy is typing a message back to you. This is very useful if you want to leave your computer, but you dont know if your friend is about to send you an important message.
Its designed by Microsoft, so its compatible with all versions, including the NT line, with the same install file (ie. no special NT version required).
They also seem to have built it with privacy in mind, and you have to allow people to see whether your online or not, which is another feature that puts me off competitors like AOL-IM.
Also, once you have allowed someone to see your status you can BLOCK them, so they can no longer see whether you are online or not. Program also has nice sounds for when your buddy comes online and when you have received a message.
However, there are some bad points to the software. Firstly, the file transfers and voice chat services often dont work one minute and then work the next. However, if you want to just chat easily then this program is definitely for you.
Also, the program automatically downloads updates, but recent ones seem to contain lots of unnecessary features such as "paging" and "dial a phone number", which most users wont use anyway, and could have just been built into Net-Meeting (a more advanced communication tool with video and sound chat).
Overall, definitely the unrivaled best chat client out there. Its freeware too.
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