Uh oh, Meebo – it looks like you might finally have some decent competition in the Android IM client space. Palringo, makers of the iPhone IM client of the same name, has released the first beta of their Android port.
Like the iPhone application, Palringo for Android supports MSN, AIM, ICQ, Yahoo!, Jabber, Gtalk, Gadu-Gadu and Facebook chat. It’ll also allow you to send picture messages to any contact, or share your location – a feature which seems a bit extraneous, considering that countless other services with the same purpose (including one built into the Android platform out of the box) are putting a ton of effort into coaxing people into sharing their location without any significant success.
Palringo for Android lacks one killer feature in its current beta state that made its iPhone counterpart stand out: voice messaging. On the iPhone port, you can record messages and send them to any one on your contact list. If they’re on Palringo, it’s played within the app – if not, it’s sent over as a link. It’s a godsend when your fingers are aching from blasting away on that itty-bitty keyboard all day. Fortunately, this isn’t too big of a deal right now, as the only Android phone on the shelves right now has a nice, finger-friendly physical keyboard. But when the touchscreen-only HTC Magic drops in April, many a fingertip around the world will be cryin’ for voice messaging.