PalTalk: An IM service

Avatar

TwoFingerScroll

PalTalk is a free instant messaging application that will let you connect with your friends, share files and join various chat rooms made by people from all over the internet as well as some video chat rooms.

Installation & Requirements

During the installation the program might try to install some extra party software like the Ask toolbar. Uncheck the respective boxes if you do not want to install them. The supported operating systems are Windows XP SP3 and later. A feature-limited flash version is also offered for non-Windows systems.

Interface

Immediately after you start the application you will notice that it is not a normal instant messaging service. The first windows that pop up will show you the various chat rooms, including the video ones. Furthermore, the application is eager to inform you about the credit system that you can use for purposes like gifting other people through the application. Other than that, users should feel familiar with the interface since it is quite neatly designed while also being very user friendly.

The greatest feature of the application is how seamless it integrates all of its features. You can add your personal contacts and only ever chat with them through the application interface or use one of the many available chat rooms in order to meet new people. Most of the chat rooms are friendly for all ages and people who disobey the rules are usually banned very quickly. Furthermore, there are a lot of ways that users interact with each other instead of the usual text-only features of most messaging services. You might see someone typing something, another user talking over the microphone and then another communicating with a webcam.

Privacy concerns should also not be a problem as you can block the users that you do not want to see. Furthermore, your webcam can be set to only activate manually and further security parameters are also available for you to configure. Obviously, finding a chat room that you will enjoy and that will have people with similar interests who will abide by most rules can lead to a bit of a search but in the end it will usually work out for the best.

Because of the fact that the application has so many available chat rooms, it is not hard to find one you will like. There are rooms for all kinds of activities like meeting new people or learning a new language. You can even create your own chat room that can hold up to 250 people for free. Unfortunately, some of the features will be limited to subscribing members only. For example, free users will only be able to view one video in a slow speed while subscribers will get access to unlimited video broadcasts in a much faster speed.

Pros

-Neat interface with a user-friendly design
-Tons of available chat rooms
-The ability to connect with anyone
-Multiple extra utilities

Cons

-Chat rooms can be too crowded

Conclusion

PalTalk is a fantastic application for anyone that wants to try something new. Whether you want to just talk with your friends or hop in a chat room with strangers, the program offers enough features to satisfy the needs of most people.