3D chat gallery: The wild world of IMVU

If you'd like to meet people online, but don't feel comfortable exposing your own face or even your real identity, the 3D chat client IMVU might be up your alley. Take a slide show tour of the IMVU universe.


This summer, Nielsen Net Ratings released a study of the fastest-growing instant-messaging clients from August 2006 to June 2007. The big winner was Meebo--the Web-based cross-platform chat app that lets AIM, Yahoo, Google Talk, MSN, and Meebo's own users talk amongst themselves anywhere they've got a Web browser and an Internet connection.

IMVU 3D chat
It\'s easy to chat in 3D with IMVU. (Credit: IMVU/CNET Networks)

The second-fastest growing chat client was more of a surprise. IMVU--which gained 154 percent more users over the year studied--is a 3D chat client that allows you to create your own avatar (covered previously) and interact with other users in a proprietary "metaverse."

IMVU combines the virtual reality of more robust universes like Second Life with the social-networking aspect of popular sites like MySpace and Facebook. Users get their own Web pages with photo galleries, buddy lists, blogs, profiles, and message boards that they can customize all day long. You can use the Web site to find people you might be interested in, and then chat with them live using the IMVU Messenger 3D application.

To see how the service works in action, take a screenshot tour of the 3D chat client IMVU.

About Peter Butler

Peter has been working at Download.com since 2003, when trialware was shareware and toolbars were those large metal rods for smashing car windows. Currently, he wrangles the reviews, videos, newsletter, blog, and special collections for Download.com, as well as managing the program data throughout the software directory.