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Trillian Review

Our Review by Kyle Flanigan on August 18th, 2010
Rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar :: CLEAN & CHIC
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Trillian is a well-established chat client available on a myriad of operating systems, including iOS.

Developer: Cerulean Studios
Price: $4.99

Design Rating: starstarstarstarstar
Features Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar
Integration Rating: starstarstarstarblankstar

Overall Rating: starstarstarstarhalfstar

Cerulean Studios first rolled out Trillian more than a decade ago, back in July 2000. Today it exists as an application available on all major operating systems, both desktop and mobile. The iPhone version alone took over two years to create, from the initial alpha development to final release in November 2009.

Presently, Trillian for iPhone supports a lengthy list of clients: MSN / Live Messenger, Yahoo! Messenger, Facebook Chat, MySpaceIM, Jabber, AIM, ICQ and Google Talk. In terms of connectivity, the application doesn't disappoint; even in comparison to the mammoth IM+ client. As with all multi-client applications, Trillian allows you to sign into all accounts at once, preventing the need of having multiple applications at your fingertips.

Getting started is a relatively painless process - you'll need to first register an account with Trillian (free) before you can begin logging in to all your clients. Once registered, you can begin connecting to your services at will.

Trillian includes all of the expected features for an IM messaging client, such as intelligent push notifications that tell you the contents of a message when it has been received, and low-bandwidth support for those on restricted data packages. Visually, it is a clean and smartly designed application. Contact list groups are collapsable and expandable, names can be edited, avatars can be viewed and a search is present. Of note are the size of avatars: small, which not only reduces data and loading times but also makes more contacts visible without having the need to scroll. Contact information is also viewable with a tap.

The chat windows are similarly sleek. An iPhone SMS style conversation gives Trillian an official feel, and if you're running multiple chats Trillian's tab feature means that switching between conversations requires only a single tap at the top of the screen. The keyboard can be hidden. The application also features typing notification support, meaning you can see whenever a user is typing you a message.

In addition to text, photos can be sent between contacts. Photos are first uploaded to Trillian's servers, meaning a smaller preview picture appears like what an MMS looks like in the SMS application of the iPhone. Buzzes can also be sent to supported clients, to alert the recipient of your existence. If you quit Trillian it will still be running in the background - even on older generation iPhones - so if a message is received a badge will appear on the Trillian icon alerting you. You go can go offline by signing out within the application.

Overall, the client is very visually appealing, and its features are ample for instant messengers. My only problem was that on my iPhone 3G I did find it somewhat slow, particularly in re-initiating the application after it has been closed. Nonetheless, Trillian is stable, secure and well worth the $4.99 price tag.

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iPhone Screenshots

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Trillian screenshot 1 Trillian screenshot 2

iPad Screenshots

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Trillian screenshot 3 Trillian screenshot 4

Apple Watch Screenshots

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Trillian screenshot 5
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