If you’re looking for a Facebook chat web app that’s convenient, accessible and user friendly, you need look no further than Chit Chat for Facebook (Web). This free browser-based instant messaging software allows you to enjoy hassle-free chat with your Facebook friends, from any platform.
Log on and get chatting with a Facebook Web Messenger
Chit Chat (Web) is the latest incarnation in the family of dedicated Facebook chat programs created by UK-based Athena IT Limited. It´s a cross-platform solution which allows you to log onto Facebook chat from any device – all you need is a Facebook account and access to a browser. It works with Google Chrome, Mozilla Firefox, Opera and Chromium, but is currently not compatible with Internet Explorer. However, there are plenty of excellent alternatives to IE out there and, instead of seeing this as a drawback, users of IE could see it as an opportunity to try out another browser.
The web-based version of Chit Chat has one key advantage over its predecessors: you don´t have to install any software to use it, making it a great solution if you find yourself on holiday with momentous news to share and an internet café as your only solution, or just want a quick chat at work.
You also don’t have to waste time and open your inbox up to more spam by registering with the software makers. All you need to do to get started is go to the Chit Chat website, log on with your Facebook username and password, and you’re in business.
Manage your conversations
Those already familiar with Athena IT Limited’s other Chit Chat products for Blackberry, iPhone and Windows desktop will not need any introduction to the clean interface, though there is new functionality to discover. Those who have not used Chit Chat before should be pleasantly surprised by its practicality and user-friendly design.
When you log in, Chit Chat (Web) automatically incorporates your Facebook contacts into a Buddy List. Your Buddy List is searchable and capable of grouping your friends using any Friends Lists you may have created in Facebook, invaluable attributes in an application when you’re trying to juggle a few hundred acquaintances.
Each of your buddies is assigned a green or orange icon depending on whether they are currently on- or offline respectively, and online/offline status updates appear in the top right hand corner of the browser window. Conveniently, unlike previous versions of the application, Chit Chat (Web) allows you to change your own status to offline without actually having to sign out. The application also allows you to view your friends’ Facebook statuses, thereby providing you with a useful ice-breaker for conversations with people you may not have gossiped with in a while.
The interface is uncluttered and straightforward, allowing you to focus on chatting with your friends with no Facebook feeds or ads to distract you from your dialogues. The use of speech bubbles in the chat windows greatly adds to the legibility of your instant messages and, unlike other versions of Chit Chat, the web version allows you to clear your chat history easily.
One of Chit Chat’s most popular features are the tabs, or buttons, which appear when you start a conversation with a friend and line up neatly at the top of the application, allowing you to keep track of multiple conversations at a glance. The buttons are interactive, changing colour when your friend goes offline and blinking when your friend sends you a message. One click on the tab will reopen the chat window and allow you to continue your conversation where you left off, and closing the tab will close your chat session.
Customize your Facebook chat
Though some of the customization options available in other versions of Chit Chat have been taken out, there is still plenty to play around with in this portible Facebook chat app. You can customize your Buddy List by hiding offline friends and only showing the names (and not the images and extra information) of online friends. You can customize the interface by setting audio and visual alerts for new messages, hiding Facebook status messages and enabling transition effects on presence updates.
As for the messages themselves, though you can no longer set font sizes and colours, Chit Chat does enable text formatting. It also has integrated emoticons, meaning there is no need to remember emoticon codes or download an additional emoticon package if you want to add some pizzazz to your prose.
Chit Chat (Web) is so easy and convenient to use that anyone from your 4-year-old sister to your 94-year-old grandfather should be able to use it without problem, but it’s still worth mentioning that there is support for the application. A “Help” feature in the menu takes you to the Chit Chat website, where Help and FAQ pages show you how to login into your Facebook account and help you troubleshoot any issues, and if you still have unanswered questions, you can drop the makers an email.
Chit Chat (Web) is not perfect. It does not support group chat, but that can hardly be viewed as an oversight since Facebook does not support third party development of this type of functionality. There is also no support for video chat, but who knows what future versions may bring. The application is, however, easy to use, handy and free, so why not give Chit Chat (Web) a try; you may well end up bookmarking it.