Editors' Note: The "Download Now" link directs you to the iTunes App Store, where you must continue the download process. You must have iTunes installed in order to open the link, and you must have an active iTunes account to download the application. This download may not be available in some countries.
Fresh out the gate, Meebo is one of the better free iPhone apps for multinetwork instant messaging, but that's only half a compliment. Not that there isn't a lot to like about it. Its buddy lists show a search bar (though it should remain static as you scroll), it has thumbnail profile pictures, and an icon of the IM network your pal is on. There's also a chat screen to help manage open conversations. If the keyboard is locked away, you can swipe to jump among your open chats. Meebo's support of emoticon is marred only by the inability to let a message fly after inserting a smiley--you have to return to the keyboard view first. While you can manage account data from the app interface, you can't change your Meebo.com profile or photo, and important settings regarding sounds and chat preferences are stored in the iPhone's Setting menu instead of on the app.
Push notification is another great chat feature you can enable with Meebo on iPhone. However, since we found the app constantly striving to reconnect to Meebo's servers during our all-day testing, the message alerts were helpful, but not reliable. As far as free multinetwork instant messager goes, Meebo turns in an easy-to-use app that gets you chatting.
Push notifications even when the app is closed, stay connected as you move from Edge to 3G to WiFi, Meebo's proven multi-network access protocols, automatically reconnect if you lose coverage so you don't miss a message. Searchable, synchronized chat history on your iPhone and meebo.com. Get Meebo on the web, your desktop, or your iPhone. Tap any links to open the built-in browser. Advanced chat session management lets you go seamlessly back and forth between Meebo on the iPhone and meebo.com.
What's new in this version:
Version 1.2 has the ability to send and receive photos, ability to IM someone not on your buddylist, support for non-US keyboards, preference to hide offline buddies, and includes bug fixes.