Today, Nokia Beta Labs announced the worldwide availability of Nokia Chat Beta for Nokia Lumia Windows Phones. Powered by Yahoo!, Nokia Chat allows to stay connected with friends who use Nokia Lumia, Asha, S40 and Symbian phones, and those using Yahoo! Messenger on other mobile devices and platforms. This cross-platform support lets users reach millions of people across a wide range of mobile devices and computers! The Nokia Chat for Windows Phone Beta is now available worldwide, in all countries where Nokia is currently offering the Nokia Chat service. According to the Nokia Beta Blog, Chat 1.1 Beta includes a number of bug fixes, some new features, and improvements to existing ones.
For instance allows it to "Tap+Send" via NFC between Lumia Phones. This means that if you have a Lumia with NFC, you can tap+send your chat address, the details of anyone on your chat contact list and Nokia Chat itself to another NFC-equipped Lumia.
Another feature is "Share a Place" which allows to share a place with a contact who is also using a Lumia and this contact will then see a touchable map preview that links to place details, directions, and reviews – for sure powered by HERE Maps.
Last but not least, v1.1 comes with the typical performance and visual improvements which makes Chat faster and more attractive.
Overall, the Nokia Chat powered by Yahoo! 1.1 Beta release includes the following features:
- Person to Person Messaging: Reach millions of Nokia Chat and Yahoo! Messenger users across different mobile and computer platforms.
- Push Notifications and Live Tile Updates: Receive new message notifications, preview new messages, and see how many notifications you've received - even when Nokia Chat isn't running.
- Share a Place: Send information about a restaurant, store, or other point of interest. If the recipient is also using a Lumia, they'll see a map preview along with details, directions, and reviews inside the HERE Maps app.
- Broadcast Your Location: Optionally include your city or neighborhood in your status message, so your friends and family know when you're near or faraway.
- Find Contacts: Scan your phone's address book to find friends and family who already use Nokia Chat and Yahoo! Messenger.
Users of a Nokia Lumia with Windows Phone 8 can take advantage of these additional features:
- Tap+Send (NFC) Between Lumia Phones: Send your chat address, the details of anyone on your chat contact list, and Nokia Chat itself to another NFC-equipped Lumia. Go to tap+send on the Chat home screen menu or long-press the name of any chat contact to get started.
- Speak Your Message: Compose a message by pressing speak, and what you say will be translated into text.
- Voice Commands: Start Nokia Chat by long-pressing the Windows key and saying "Chat with" and the name of an existing contact: for example, "Chat with John".
- Lock Screen Notifications: See how many Nokia Chat notifications you have on your lock screen. Start the built-in Settings app and select "lock screen" to begin.
The Nokia Chat for Windows Phone Beta, which is available exclusively to Nokia Lumia users, is now available worldwide, in all countries where we currently offer the Nokia Chat service.
In my opinion, it's an interesting which keeps customers within the Nokia universe connected. Unfortunately (for Nokia), the former mobile phone leader isn't as dominant anymore which might limit the availability of chat partners. Nevertheless, thankfully Nokia is also supporting Yahoo! Messenger to broaden the reach, but then again I don't know anyone anymore who's using Yahoo! Messenger? Maybe Nokia should work closer with Microsoft instead and should consider to also support Microsoft's Skype service?
Cheers ~ Arne