Several dozen employees cut from AIM team
AOL has quickly denied speculation that it was planning to cease its AOL Instant Messenger service. The company recently acknowledged that it would cut the AIM division staff by approximately 40 employees in the near future, igniting rumors that the layoffs were a sign that the company was stepping away from the service.
Mac OS X Mountain Lion adds iMessage, Reminders
In a surprise step, Apple on Thursday gave developers a preview version of OS X Mountain Lion, the next significant update to the core OS. The new version is directly influenced by iOS 5 and includes Notification Center, Reminders, Notes, Game Center, and Twitter integration, with iCloud syncing where it's relevant. AirPlay Mirroring is also new to the Mac and shares exactly what's on screen through an Apple TV.
AIM on desktop and mobile gets new look
AOL on Wednesday launched a redesigned AIM for both desktops and mobile devices to compete with modern alternatives like Facebook Messenger or Google+. The service now syncs message histories and makes sure users can follow what was missed, even if they were signed out. As a nod to privacy, users can turn syncing off if they don't want a conversation to stay on the server.
Small Louisiana firm claims to have patents
Lake Charles, Louisiana-based Transcenic filed a complaint Friday in the Federal Delaware District Court claiming that Google, Microsoft and AOL (via MapQuest) have infringed on its patents. At issue are street perspective views that the companies use on their mapping websites. Transcenic is looking for unspecified, but tripled damages.
AIM and Google Talk now working directly
AIM users have reported that an expected direct federation between AIM chats and Google Talk is now working properly. Any message from an AIM user can go through by messaging someone at their Gmail address, and Google Talk users can do the same by messaging someone's screen name with "@aol.com" attached. Messages not only skip any lag in the network hop but include typing notifications, and status updates show for contacts on both sides.
WP7 Mango to get multi-network IM and Office 365
Microsoft's upcoming Mango update for Windows Phone 7 had even more features unveiled Sunday through the latest episode of the Windows Phone Dev podcast. The release is now due to have built-in instant messaging not just for Windows Live Messenger but AIM and Facebook as well. Microsoft's system would be smart and weave into the people hub, automatically detecting whichever is the best network and create group messages.
AV by AIM now official, revamped as Web 2.0
The new AIM video chatting service, AV by AIM, recently leaked is now official. The service and interface has been given a much more contemporary look and Web 2.0 functionality. It also has a unique way of operating by launching within a user’s browser, and not requiring a user to sign in. It also does not even require friends to be on the same service and is interoperable with Google and Facebook.
AOL AV leaks in beta for video chat
AOL was spotted last night running a beta test of a new, very simple video chat system. AV by AIM is designed to work entirely without a login and lets users join in solely by sharing a link, not a contact list. It works with as many as four participants at once and has a text chat component that flows over the video feed.
App goes universal, supports most IMs, Facebook
Agilemobile has launched a universal version of its Internet messaging app, Agile Messenger HD adding iPad capabilities to the iPhone app. The app, which allows users to connect to multiple messaging services like Facebook IM, AIM, Jabber, GoogleTalk, Yahoo Messenger and any XMPP server, is a complete rebuild rather than a port of the iPhone app.
Lion does Yahoo audio and video chat
Another finding late Saturday has shown Apple expanding iChat AV to Yahoo Messenger. Marck Unkow has found that users can now sign into Yahoo for both audio and video conversations, much as they could with AIM in the past. The client's only non-AIM support in the past had been for Jabber, which led to support for Google Talk, but only for text.
Skype to cut off Nimbuzz support by October 31
RIM promises BB 6 updates to older phones
RIM as part of the BlackBerry Torch launch provided details of the upgrade plan for BlackBerry 6. The new OS will reach the Bold 9700, the Bold 9650 and the Pearl 3G as well as future devices. A timetable hasn't been set, but it should reach devices in the "months ahead."
DST buys ICQ from AOL for $187.5 million
The largest Internet company in the Eastern European markets, Digital Sky Technologies has purchased instant messaging program ICQ from AOL, the two companies announced on Wednesday. ICQ is the leading IM service in Russia and other international markets, and Digital Sky purchased it for $187.5 million.
AIM 1.0 for Mac launched
AOL has released AIM for Mac 1.0, adding features from the PC version of its instant messaging service, as well as new abilities. AIM 1.0 also forms a part of the just-released AOL Desktop for Mac 1.5 update, which features improved parental controls. Available as a stand-alone application, AIM now includes expressions and one-click e-mail support, plus the previously PC-only file transfers, friendly names and tabbed IM conversations. Users can select buddy sounds, wallpapers and animated buddy icons, and finally take advantage of Apple's VoiceOver feature.
AIM for Mac public beta
AOL has released the first public beta of a new AIM for Mac client, the first major update since February of 2004. In the new software, users have access to AIM Expressions, allowing them to customize their AIM sounds, wallpaper, emoticon set and Buddy Icon. AOL is also looking to implement some of the more popular features from other versions of AIM, such as file transfers, tabbed conversations, AIM Groups, and AIM Blast.
Palringo IM app on iPhone
Palringo says that it has brought its self-named instant messaging client (iTunes link) to the iPhone. In contrast to apps such as AIM, Palringo is able to interact with several different IM platforms, including not just AIM but iChat, Yahoo, ICQ and Google Talk, as well as less common options such as Jabber and Gadu Gadu. Contacts from all networks are presented in a single list.
AmTech on iPhone 2.0
Early experience with the iPhone 2.0 firmware is cause for optimism, says analyst Shaw Wu of American Technology Research. Wu explains that like hosts of others, AmTech was able to download and install the v2.0 firmware in advance on Thursday, in turn enabling the installation of software from the iTunes App Store. Wu notes that over 500 applications were available for the App Store's debut, and that this number should eventually extend into the thousands.