Facebook Messenger unveils Secret Conversations

Facebook Messenger is gradually introducing end-to-end encryption in the form of Secret Conversations to its roughly 900 million active monthly users. This new security feature relies on a protocol called Signal (already used in the standalone Signal app, Facebook's WhatsApp, and Google's Allo). If you're one of the lucky ones who's received the Secret Conversations update, then your Messenger chats will be private.

You'll know if you have it, thanks to an alert that sits atop Facebook Messenger's home screen. ... Read More &raquo

Topics: Android Software , iOS Software

Tags: Messaging , Facebook , Chat

Best apps for Mac

Were you lucky enough to receive a new Mac laptop or desktop this holiday season?

Once you've booted up that shiny new Mac for the first time and have had a chance to look around, check out our Best apps for Mac to get the lowdown on great apps you can download. We feature both free and paid software in our collection and there's something from just about every category.

Whether you want a different browser than Safari, want to discover... Read More &raquo

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: Apple , Mac , music , Chat , MP3 , browsers , e-mail , social , desktop , software , DVD

Skype desktop app now makes Facebook video calls

Skype deepened its partnership with Facebook today by adding Facebook video calling to both its Mac and Windows applications.

With the just-announced Skype 5.4 Beta for Mac and Skype 5.7 Beta for Windows, you can initiate a Facebook video call without having to open up your browser and log in to the social-networking site. Just connect your Facebook account to Skype, select a Facebook friend, and hit the Skype video call button. Your friend picks up the call directly... Read More &raquo

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: Windows , video , Mac , Facebook , Chat , Skype , Windows software , VoIP

IM+ for Android jumps to 5.0

IM+, the popular instant-messaging application for Android, jumps to version 5.0 today, bringing with it a revamped tablet-optimized interface, improved battery usage, and several other really nifty features.

Beyond its shiny new interface, the big addition to IM+ is its support for Android's native Share tool. Now you can select text from other apps or your browser and easily add it to an instant message through IM+. Sure, this seems like a basic feature, but that's precisely why it's a big... Read More &raquo

Tags: Android , apps , Chat , IM

New Yahoo Messenger looks great on the iPad

Last night, Yahoo announced the update for the Yahoo Messenger app to work with the iPad, adding voice and video calling for iPad 2 owners, a sleek new iPad-optimized interface, and improved spam management that lets you block one or all add requests from a single view.

Yahoo Messenger (Universal) had already been available on the iPhone and iPod Touch since April 2009. But with this Universal update, iPad users will no longer have to use the unoptimized iPhone... Read More &raquo

Tags: iPhone , iOS , video , iPod Touch , iPad , Chat , Yahoo , voice

Trillian 5 adds Pro features for free

Trillian, the popular multiple-personality IM client, recently upgraded to version 5, giving it a refreshed interface, improved social integration, and, get this, all of the Pro features from previous versions, all for free. Now every user can enjoy themes, activity history viewer, and multiple location sign-in, along with the newly developed continuous client feature, which keeps chats synced across all devices. For now, these upgrades have only hit the Windows client (download) and the now free... Read More &raquo

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: Android , apps , Chat , IM , Windows software , Trillian

Instant voice mail and online role-playing: iPhone apps of the week

Some interesting Apple news this week from AppleInsider revolves around Apple's acquisition of the iCloud domain name. Apparently, according to sources, Apple paid Sweden-based company Xcerion an estimated $4.5 million for the domain. It is rumored that the cloud service will be announced this summer at Apple's Worldwide Developers Conference here in San Francisco.

There have already been plenty of rumors that Apple's cloud service would enable users to stream music to iOS devices, but according to the article,... Read More &raquo

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: iPhone , Apple , iOS , iPod , iPhoneappsweek , Touch , iPad , Chat , Windows software , voice , rpg

Cheap texting and extreme jogging: iPhone apps of the week

An interesting news item over at AppleInsider caught my eye the other day, but I'm not sure how I would feel about this particular rumor if it turned out to be true. Apparently Apple is investigating the use of hover gestures on its devices as an alternative to multitouch. A few of the ideas include the ability to make the OK gesture with your hand or use hitchhiker thumb gestures to navigate around. As a tech writer, I... Read More &raquo

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: iPhone , Apple , apps , iPod , iPhoneappsweek , Touch , Chat , Windows software

Skype 5 beta for Mac adds group video calls

Skype's VoIP calling is by now well known to most Mac users, and the ability to make computer-to-computer calls anywhere in the world for free is already extremely popular to international users. Skype's official version on the Mac is 2.8 and is still a bit behind its Windows counterpart (Skype 5 for Windows). But a beta release today brings the software to version 5.0 on the Mac, and the Skype team has added some great new features to... Read More &raquo

Topics: Mac Software

Tags: video , Chat , Skype , VoIP , voice

Trillian chats up Android

Already available in one form or another for BlackBerry and iOS, Trillian launched the beta version of its multiprotocol instant-messaging client for Android on Thursday. Trillian for Android brings many of the desktop program's core features to Android 1.6 and above, including tabbed chats, emoticons, and support for a broad range of instant-messaging services.

To install the app, be sure that you've enabled installing from unknown sources under Settings, then Applications.

The app will work with AIM, Facebook Chat,... Read More &raquo

Tags: beta , Chat , Trillian , instant message