Palringo Instant Messenger Social Networking Released: July 26th, 2008 Seller: Palringo Limited 0.9 MB FREE Palringo is a multi-client instant messenger for the iPhone and iPod Touch. It supports MSN, Yahoo, AIM, Gadu-Gadu, ICQ, XMPP/Jabber, Google Talk, and iChat. The service requires a free Palringo account (which their site was down for a few hours after the application release,). Currently, the site is simply white background with black text. Palringo does not keep you logged on even after tapping the home button like AIM does and MobileChat promises to do. You are immediately signed off. With that in mind, receiving a call will keep you signed on as long as you do not answer it. Loading up the buddy list takes so long, I would rather go use meebo.com. It takes about a minute to load up three clients...make that two minutes. There are three places you can go once signed into the Palringo client: Accounts, Contact List, and Groups. Adding an account is easy, but it requires you to tap edit. Why they decided to put it in the edit menu instead of simply putting a plus button on the other side (where it's currently blank), I will never know. This screen also has three toolbars, with the extra toolbar simply editing your profile (actually, it edits the status of your Palringo account and that's it). Contacts list. The icons aren't as simple as they could be, but I suppose that is a preference thing. It should be noted that if someone initiates a chat, it is actually a separate window than if you initiated it (if they initiated it, the upper left hand corner where it shows the status will show them offline...if you initiated it, then the correct status is shown). Switching between chats is a simple tap of the Palringo logo at the bottom. You may also swipe, however you do not swipe the chat area like AIM. You have to swipe the toolbar at the bottom which is actually very difficult. Sending a message requires you to tap the send button instead of the return button on the keyboard (I believe this is done so you can access the switching of chats, since the keyboard covers the tab bar). Sending pictures! Okay, sending a picture is nice, but there's no direct connection. The picture is uploaded to the Palringo site and the link is posted on the person's chat (though in your chat, it shows up). All in all, I believe this application is actually worse than meebo.com. With the inability to stay signed in, the bugs of two of the same chats open, the swiping, and the freezing of the contacts list (unless you tap edit and then tap done), even beejive loads faster than Palringo. Note that I am also on Wi-Fi when testing this. The application has potential...but by that time, MobileChat would have released. Overall: 5/10 Summary: Appearance is okay, but some things can be moved to make it simpler as well as the segmented control should be tinted. Functionality is okay, but there are many bugs such as the dual chat and the contact list freezing. Usability is not that great. Signing off after tapping home and the swiping is pretty much useless (better to use the menu). I recommend beejive.