There's a new beta of Live Messenger 8.0.

Why have all the major IM suppliers forgotten how to ship early, ship often? Skype is shipping a major release every qtr. The rest of them have a release schedule measured in years. The most annoying is Googletalk. It's now 8 months since the LibJingle announcement. Where's the code that supports it? Where's the next big release, because it still looks like Alpha code.

None of them (with the possible exception of AOL) seem to understand that voice, video and conferencing (both chat and voice) are important. Skype is stealing a major march on them here. And what about the 3rd parties. Where's Trillian and Gaim's voice and video?

And none of them really understand the importance of an API and things like showing status on the web with a simple URL scheme to launch chat/voice.

So this beta was good because it finally lets you send a message to somebody who's offline, delivered when they next appear. And it was good because it prompted an upgrade automatically. But it was bad because the install required a reboot of XP. *WHY?* And the shared folders is clever. but why is there still all the adverts and that stupid "Billing Information" menu choice. And did they finally lift the 150 contacts limit on the directory size? And does voice and video actually work? I use Skype Voice every day. But I almost never use MSN voice and video because it hardly ever seems to work.

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[ 09-May-06 10:30am ] [ , ]