Wednesday, 30 April 2014

FireChat: Another Mobile App that Let You Chat Without a Data-Connection

It’s now a history where people used normal SMS for sending messages to each other when the revolutionary internet messaging called WhatsApp started not much earlier but just in June 2009. And after this launch; it not just changed the whole mode of communication over the smartphones but also affected the BBM messaging immensely. Nowadays even a BlackBerry owner uses WhatsApp to send messages.

So, is this an end or there is still any scope of improvement? What if you don’t have internet connection somewhere or no Wi-Fi connection either? Then you can’t send messages, right!! Wrong, when you have a new application which can take this whole messaging to another level. An application which don’t requires actual internet or any Wi-Fi connections or cellular connection to send messages, yes you read it right – No Internet or cellular connection! And this application is known as FireChat!

This iOS-enabled App uses Apple's Multi-peer Connectivity framework -- essentially a peer-to-peer feature that lets you share messages with other App users nearby. As per the Micha Benoliel, CEO of Open Garden firm that developed this App quoted that – “FireChat allows the device to connect directly to others nearby using Bluetooth, peer-to-peer Wi-Fi or traditional Wi-Fi networks so you do not actually need a data connection."

This was previously launched only for Apple users but now the company has launched the Android version too. FireChat is a hyperlocal chat tool that allows smartphones to connect with each other directly, without the necessity for Wi-Fi hotspots or any cellular networks. As long as two devices or any bunch of devices in a small space can get connected to one another, using Bluetooth or their Wi-Fi radios, they’ll be able to chat.

Currently it got 2 tabs, one is for everyone where you can see the list of people chatting to each other who all are listed in this FireChat – it’s like a local chat room where you can read every message and reply if you want to and on other tab you have nearby option in which you can chat with people who all are nearby to your device. This sort of communication is good for any small organization where they all can chat on single portal where you don’t even need an internet connection.

Snapshots of FireChat on Apple and Android

FireChat works by leveraging one of the iOS 7's lesser-known features called the Multi-peer Connectivity Framework. It’s kind of similar where you can AirDrop data in a similar way, it let you send photos, messages to nearby iOS users. Therefore, looking at this feature developer’s work on this same strategy to gather attention at a place where you have cell service is poor or nonexistent e.g. chatting at sports games, trade shows, concerts, on the subway, or on an airplane etc.

Personally speaking I am not a person who likes to participate in any local chats where you have bunch of unknown people to talk with. I enjoy my personal space and have selected set of friends to whom I like to hangout or chat. Although the nearby option is still better but this application is not my cup of tea. However, I don’t think it’s a bad application either, it may be used as SOS if you are stuck somewhere and want to convey a message and don’t even have internet connection or cellular networks. Currently this application is still under progress for further development since there are some bugs bugging the users. Nevertheless, if you want to give it a try to this app you easily download it from the respective stores of iOS and Android. Below I am sharing links from where you can download this app –

FireChat for iOS – Click Here
FireChat for Android – Click Here

At the end, it would really like to know your experience with this app and what you really think over this mobile application development? Or do you think this app got any scope in near future?

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