Comparison of Multi-Protocol Instant Messengers

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There are many instant messaging clients present and most of the people hold an account in multiple instant messaging services. It is not a good idea to use individual client for each of the instant messaging service instead you can use some of the multiple protocol instant messaging clients. Using this multiple protocol instant messaging clients you can manage all your instant messaging accounts under one application.

You can login and use the client like you do on any of the IM application. Most of these clients also offer social networking such that you can stay connected to the social networking sites like Facebook, Twitter, etc., from the application. They are very easy to use and you can login into multiple accounts in the same service using these clients.

Be sure to stay connected with all your friends on various networks using these free multi-protocol IM clients.  Here are some of the popular multi protocol IM clients are being compared based on the features available.

Multi-Protocol IM Client/ Features

Digsby

Pidgin

Miranda IM

Meebo

Price

Free

Free

Free

Free

Platform

Windows, Mac and Linux

Cross-Platform

Windows

Web

Yahoo

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Windows Live Messenger (MSN)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

AIM

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Google Talk

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Jabber

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

MySpace IM

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Facebook

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Twitter

Yes

Yes

Yes

No

Text chat

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Voice chat

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Video chat

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

File sharing

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

smileys

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Spell check

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

ugin support

Na

Yes

Yes

No

Email management

Yes

No

No

No

Multi-Protocol IM Client/ Features

Adium

Trillian

Instantbird

Empathy

Price

Free

Free

Free

Free

Operating System Supported

Mac

Windows
Trillian Astra for Mac

Windows, Mac and Linux

Windows, Mac and Linux

Yahoo

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Windows Live Messenger (MSN)

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

AIM

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Google Talk

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Jabber

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

MySpace IM

Yes

No

Yes

Yes

Facebook

Yes

No

Yes

Yes

Twitter

Yes

No

NA

Yes

Text chat

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Voice chat

No

Yes

NA

Yes

Video chat

No

NA

NA

Yes

File sharing

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

smileys

Yes

Yes

No

Yes

Spell check

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Plugin support

Yes

Yes

Yes

Yes

Email management

No

No

No

No

Digsby is leading in the market of multiprotocol IM client industry and it is the favorite of many social networking users with the support to the social networking sites like the Facebook, MySpace, Twitter, etc., you are sure to find what your friends are up to. Digsby is constantly improving and adds new features or optimizes the features for example the file sharing is significantly improved in the latest edition. Research Module of Digsby is a thing to consider, you can donate your CPU processing power when you are system is in idle mode such that Digsby can use your system CPU to conduct research for non-profit organizations like Help Conquer Cancer or for paid projects that help get Digsby some revenue such that Digsby can be free. You can choose to disable this option if you choose so go to Help–> Support Digsby in that disable Help Digsby Conduct Research option. Digsby do not collect any of your personal information at point of time and it is safe to use Digsby to chat over internet.

Pidgin is a free multiprotocol IM client that runs on cross platform. The user interface of Pidgin is very simple and easy to understand and it uses very less CUP power compared to Digsby but this comes at a cost it does not support video and voice chat. So if you do not want these features and want to save on CPU processing speed for other applications and still want to stay connected with your friends then you can consider this application.

Miranda IM is a windows only application that supports multiple IM clients and it gives you the freedom knowing about your friends status on various social networking sites and like the Pidgin it also have no support for the video and voice chat and Windows only design makes it to use much less CPU power. IF you are not looking for email notifications and want to save on your CPU Miranda IM is ideal for computers that run low on resources.

Meebo is an online IM client so you do not have to install any application on the system to stay connected with your friends on various networks. This is very useful when you are on move or want to chat with your friends on a public computer, etc., to start chatting instantly. Meebo supports OpenID such that if you have linked your accounts with your OpenID that you can log into multiple accounts easily with single userID. This is a great multiprotocol IM client to consider when you are on different computer or on a public computer.

Adium is a free Multiprotocol IM client that is developed to run on the MAC computers. Adium is developed with the help of the library of Pidgin and Libpurple to add support for multiple networks. Adium is very popular among the MAC users to stay connected with friends on multiple networks at present it does not support video and voice chat. As Adium depends on Pidgin and Libpurple for a protocol level functionality, people are looking forward to add support for these features.

Trillian is available in both free version and paid version and recently they have introduced MAC version of Trillian called Trillian Astra. There are far more features in this application than any other multiprotocol IM clients. Trillian pro is a paid version by using this application you can even send SMS to mobile phones. The most interesting feature of Trillian is Activity history all the chat history that you have made is saved in text files and XML files such that you can use them for further reference. You can add different skins and change the interface of the client according to your choose. Trillian Astra can be loaded on iPhone such that you can have instant chatting even on a move with all of your friends.

Instantbird is a cross platform multiprotocol IM client and with minimal features it best suits all your text chatting needs and uses very minimal system resources such that you can save system resources to run other applications. With simple interface and small form factor this is an ideal choose if you are looking for a text based multiprotocol IM client.

Empathy is one another free cross platform multiprotocol IM client with lots of features. It does not support email management but otherwise all the features are same as the Digsby application.

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