November 21, 2006 at 11:00 pm #25614
Scott Werndorfer and the crew over at Cerulean Studios tipped their hat to the BigBlueBall with a preview of their latest creation: Trillian Astra. Looking over the long list of features — and performance improvements — I’m impressed. Here are some highlights:
- Loads skins up to 100% faster than Trillian 3.1
- Uses 5 MB less memory
- Faster redraw times (important if you have lots of contacts)
- A dedicated Google Talk plug-in, separating it from the Jabber plug-in for improved Google Talk support
- MySpace IM connectivity — by popular request
- Enhanced file transfers, including easier multiple file transfers
- More complete status message compatibility
New Astra Features
- ‘Portable’ contact list. Your contacts are downloaded from the server, meaning you can run Trillian Astra from any computer and your contact list will always be complete and up-to-date
- One account, multiple networks. Hand-out a unified Trillian Astra account and people can contact you on any of the networks you use
- Like MeeboMe, Trillian Astra provides a web client for ‘no-download’ access to IM.
- Like Meetro, Trillian Astra allows you to share your geo-location information — fun for mobile users looking to find friends nearby.
- Online status indicator. Share your status with anyone on your blog, at MySpace or in a forum signature, regardless of which IM network(s) you use.
- Widgets – share your Flickr photostream, or your current playing song, or get the weather for your contacts.
- Improved image sharing
- “Buzz” compatibility (for those of you who live that feature on WLM and Yahoo! Messenger).
- Handwriting support for Tablet PCs
- Local time zone info for your contacts
- New ways of viewing your contacts
- Dynamic list height — your contact list can be configured to automatically expand to show all visible contacts
As many of you know, I’ve been a big fan of Trillian since it’s first beta. I still use Trillian 3.1 regularly, but in addition to many of the native IM programs. My biggest complaint is the intial load time. If Astra delivers on this front, that alone will be reason for me to upgrade.
So how do you get Trillian Astra? Sadly, Trillian Astra is still not available for download, unless your one of the lucky few selected as an alpha tester. Werndorfer says they are opening up the testing to more people as quickly as they can ensure stability and scalability.
Check out the details, a Flash demo and screenshots at Trillian AstraNovember 22, 2006 at 12:07 am #154586
Wow, they really went all out on this. I can’t wait to get my hands on it and see just how it runs. Heh, anyone notice the familer style of presenting they did? Maybe they just were eating apples…November 22, 2006 at 8:32 am #154581
Too bad it doesn’t run on Apples! Although with the new web interface, that’s not quite as big an issue.
Personally, I’d love to see support for mobiles… Windows Mobile at least.November 22, 2006 at 6:14 pm #154583
@Jeff Hester 210668 wrote:
Personally, I’d love to see support for mobiles… Windows Mobile at least.
Amen to that… I’m getting a Q in a few weeks and I dunno what I’m going to do about IM on it.November 23, 2006 at 4:46 am #154590
Wow, Very nice! Can’t wait for the release.
Really like the Google talk addition.November 24, 2006 at 5:49 am #154585
Great! So trillian isn’t dead after all! Great news, can’t wait to see a public release soon! Congratz to trillian on all of the progress they’ve made behind closed doors! Faster drawing speeds and many new features 😉 very welcome here!November 29, 2006 at 4:23 am #154582
If you’re interested in signing up to test the alpha version, Scott has posted a sign-up form on their blog: Cerulean Studios’ Blog: alpha signups
No promises, but hey, you might get your hot hands on it sooner rather than later!November 29, 2006 at 12:36 pm #154587
Thanks for the heads up! Hopefully the fact I am the “other IM” guy here will help me in getting it, plus I have multiple testing environments. Hey, I’m a fricken geek 😛 Can’t wait to hopefully try it out!December 21, 2006 at 8:03 pm #154594
Can’t wait until a final version is released, or even a public beta in that matter. :pMarch 23, 2007 at 8:53 pm #154595
Is this like msn or yahoo? and does it got chatroomsMarch 23, 2007 at 9:03 pm #154584
It works with every IM network and, yes… it will go in “chatrooms”.March 25, 2007 at 1:19 pm #154591
The performance specs of Astra certainly look very impressive…correct me if I’m wrong, but the biggest drawback of Astra is that it’s not free? Trillian 3.1 seems to have been with us for decades.March 25, 2007 at 1:24 pm #154588
@Philip 216726 wrote:
The performance specs of Astra certainly look very impressive…correct me if I’m wrong, but the biggest drawback of Astra is that it’s not free? Trillian 3.1 seems to have been with us for decades.
Astra will be free and paid. As of now it is in alpha testing and they are releasing new builds quite frequently. Trillian 3.1 has been around for like ever, personally I think it’s to get the Pro accounts to expire of their free upgrade to Astra…March 26, 2007 at 1:04 am #154592
Those guys in Trillian don’t seem to have marketing sense. They release Astra late, and they want to charge for the Pro version. If they’d make it free, that would be a killer IM client…March 26, 2007 at 1:06 am #154589
It’s pretty killer already isn’t it? Plus, all this stuff is extra marketing for them and the wait makes people want it. Their marketing is fantastic. Everyone does it for them.
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