IM+

While WhatsApp seems to be doing well for the SMS crowd, IM+ from SHAPE is still the de facto messaging app for all other services. IM+ is an all-in-one and includes support for Skype, VK, Facebook, Yahoo!, ICQ and more. Even better is the fact that SHAPE actively pays attention to their Windows Phone and Windows 8 base, giving them frequent updates with new features.

Today, version 3.0 for the free and Pro versions have landed on the Store. Even better, the Pro version, which normally runs for $4.99, is on sale for just the weekend, being knocked down to $1.99. So what’s new? We have the full changelog below.

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When it comes to instant messaging these days, there’s really only one “all in one” app out there, and that’s IM+ from Shape. The app has received numerous updates over the last few years and they’re one of the many companies who are fully on board with Microsoft and their Windows / Windows Phone vision.

IM+, both the Pro and Lite versions, have received updates today bringing them up to Windows 8.1 standards. Don’t forget, in 8.1 developers have a few new tools to take advantages of, including a new tile size (“large”) and the updated “snap view”, which has been replaced in 8.1 with a more flexible system.

So what’s new in IM+ for Windows 8.1? Let’s take a look at the full changelog as we have all of the details.

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Update 5 PM ET: As it turns out the IM+ update is much, much larger than anticipated. See below for the full changelog.

For those of you who use the all-in-one messenger app IM+, both the Pro and Free versions were updated today to 2.9.1.0. The update doesn’t appear to bring any new features but is instead a rapid bug fix for some connectivity issues to Skype and VK that was reported by users.

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If you’re in the market for an all-in-one messaging app for either your Windows Phone 8 or Windows 8 device, you may want to take a gander at SHAPE Service’s IM+ Pro app, a long running staple for instant messaging.

The apps usually runs for $3.99 (Windows Phone 8) and $4.99 (Windows 8) but both versions have dropped to $2.49 and $2.99, respectively. While that’s still a bit pricey for an all in one messenger, IM+ has a fairly solid reputation after being around for years on various platforms. Plus if you have both versions, they will reportedly keep in sync with each other, which is kind of awesome.

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Windows Phone 8 gamers are currently enjoying this week’s new Xbox title, the delightfully free and also just plain delightful Jetpack Joyride. But you can never have too many games, especially when you’re addicted to Xbox Achievements. Your mouth gets dry, the shakes start to set in, and only a new game will keep you from eating a family sized bag of Whoppers (wrapper and all) in your delirium.

Enter the Xbox Red Stripe Deal of the Week, only too eager to ease the pain! The latest weekly sale title is BulletAsylum from UberGeekGames. Normally priced at $2.99, it’s now discounted to 99 cents. BulletAsylum previously went on sale for $1.99 once in May 2012, so this is a better deal… Probably what the game should always have cost, in fact.

The new non-Xbox Red Stripe Deals are indie game Chicken Invaders 3 from Betacom and popular instant messaging app IM+ Pro. Both cost only a dollar this week, which is an especially good deal for the normally $5 IM+ Pro. Read on for more details, screenshots, and download links!

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IM+ Pro released for Windows 8

Shape has released IM+ for Windows 8 to compliment the already available free IM+ app on the platform. The pro version of the popular messaging service sports a number of features that aren't available in the standard free app that's available. In both apps, major IM services are supported, including MeinVZ, Jabber, Fetion, Renren, SINA Weibo, Mamba.Ru, Yandex chat and more.

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In case you needed some apps today, especially ones that are on sale, we have two to mention for you.

IM+ Pro, the all inclusive instant messaging app with push notifications and Mango-optimizations, is 50% off from its usual $4.99 to a more reasonable $2.49. The app just hit v1.9 recently, adding more improvements. There is of course a free version of the app with ads, but with the Pro you get a less cluttered, more streamlined look--which is what we personally opt for. Seems like a good deal though, so grab it here in the Marketplace if interested.

Likewise, Surfcube 3D browser, which sets the standard for a great UI while browsing, is also on sale for $0.99. Surfcube 3D is a great tabbed browsing experience that allows you use gestures to "rotate" the screen around for quick access to the address bar, tabs and options. You also get full-screen browsing and some great share features as well. The app recently under went some Mango-upgrades itself and if you surf a lot, you'll want to give this great app a trial run too. Pick that up here in the Marketplace.

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Love 'em or hate 'em, you have to give SHAPE Service some credit: they are dead set on making IM+ the best instant messaging option on Windows Phone. They consistently make updates to the app and they're not exactly inconsequential ones either. So it's always exciting to get an update from them and version 1.9 doesn't disappoint. Here's the changelog:

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Well not even a week after the last update which introduced some new features we get IM+ going to version 1.8 and adding Mango support for fast-app switching, at least according to Shape Service's Facebook page.

If there was any app that really needed this feature, it'd be IM+ just do to the nature of how instant messaging apps are used.

So how does it feel? Honestly, we still see a "resume" screen which doesn't make us feel too excited and there's no other advanced Mango features--no pinnable contacts, the live tile doesn't seem to be double sided, etc. It feels kind of the same as before. But hey, if you find anything new, hit us up on comments and let us know!

Grab IM+ v1.8 here in the Marketplace. Thanks, Sedp23, for the heads up!

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IM+ v1.7 now available but still not Mango ready

The good news is an updated version of IM+, version 1.7, has just gone live in the Marketplace. The bad news is this is not the Mango-updated version, despite earlier reports from SHAPE Services themselves on the matter.

So what is new?

  • Fast start, scrolling and contact searching;
  • New Yahoo features: "Show address book contacts" and "Logout from all location".

"Fast start" sounds a bit promising and indeed, the app does start and load a tad faster, though we can't help but imagine a Mango version would, you know feel even better (plus that fast-app resume is desperately needed). The contact searching feature is also a great option and scrolling seems a bit smoother to us as well.

We'll reach out to SHAPE Services and see what they have to say about the missing-Mango version. Grab the Pro version here in the Marketplace.

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Good news for users of IM+ (both the Pro and free versions), you can now update to v1.6. The new version brings some pretty cool new features that we're liking a lot. Via their Facebook page:

  • Send photo option
  • Message delivery confirmation
  • Spanish, German, French, Italian language support

The send photo option is what it sounds like--you select a photo, it sends, they receive a in-chat bubble that they tap to open the photo. Worked like a charm for us. The "message delivery confirmation" is even nicer--now when you send a message, the bubble is yellow till it's received by the user, at which point it goes green in color. That's a great addition and gives a little peace of mind.

*Remember, this version does not have MSN/Live Messenger--so if you're still on v1.2, do not upgrade if you want to keep that feature.

This is still the NoDo version though and we can expect update soon: "Mango support will come to IM+ along with the official release of Mango. Thank you for understanding!"--so hopefully next week sometime? If one app could really benefit from fast-app resume, it's IM programs. We can't wait. Get IM+ Pro in the Marketplace here.

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IM+ v1.4 is now live - reminder!

For those who use IM+, you'll be happy to know that v1.4 is now available. The big new features are faster loading/connecting (confirmed) and advanced push settings, including a sweet auto-responder and message forwarder:

  • Significantly improved contact list scrolling and overall application performance
  • Push-to-Email option allows incoming messages to be forwarded to your email
  • Autoreply feature will instantly notify your contacts that your are in Push mode
  • ICQ / AIM / AOL / iChat group chats
  • ICQ contacts can now be added into your AOL/AIM/iChat contact lists and vice versa
  • VKontakte and Yandex IM services are now supported

But, we must also remember that MSN/Live Messenger is also now gone, so you are warned--don't upgrade if you need that! Anyways, besides the loss of Live Messenger, we like the improvements and additions. Grab IM+ here in the Marketplace (if update doesn't show, just back out and head back in to the Marketplace to refresh).

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Eck. As IM+ themselves say, this is a good news/bad news announcement. Version 1.4 of their app has been submitted to the Marketplace, meaning we should see it in the next two days. This update will bring the following new and improved features:

  • Significantly improved contact list scrolling and overall application performance
  • Push-to-Email option allows incoming messages to be forwarded to your email
  • Autoreply feature will instantly notify your contacts that your are in Push mode
  • ICQ / AIM / AOL / iChat group chats
  • ICQ contacts can now be added into your AOL/AIM/iChat contact lists and vice versa
  • VKontakte and Yandex IM services are now supported

Now the bad news: no more MSN/Live Messenger. From their mouth, Microsoft has asked them to remove their service and alas SHAPE Service has to comply:

"MSN/WLM support has been dropped due to Microsoft request. For those of you who care more about MSN/WLM support than new features (again, new features list will follow), we strongly recommend to do not update once version 1.4 is released."

Ouch. We guess Microsoft didn't give them exception for v1.1 awhile back? So consider this your fair warning folks, if you need MSN/Live Messenger then you don't want to update to v1.4 when it hits. Resist it. At least you can get Mango on your phone and solve this problem that way.

Source: IM+ Facebook

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IM+ now sports a free version

If you're among the IM+ users who purchased the app back when it was released with a price tag of $9.99, you were kicking yourself at the price drop to $4.99 that came soon after. Now prepare to kick yourself on another part of your body as SHAPE Services has just brought in a free (ad-supported) version of IM+.

The main app, which continues to set new buyers back $4.99, has been given a new title of IM+ Pro with the only noticeable difference between the two versions is being the placement of adverts - functionality appears to be fully implemented in the free offering. To get the free version, grab the link here in the Marketplace.

Source: Windows Phone Metro  Thanks to the many who tipped us on this!

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Well here's a nice little surprise. After dropping $5 to $4.99 (and ticking off some early adopters), SHAPE Services has just rolled out a v1.1 update to the fledgling instant messaging app. But the surprise is that they added MSN/Live Messenger support, something they previously mentioned as not possible (due to Microsoft's policy).

Evidently either someone was incorrect in that statement or Microsoft revised their position, because you can go and grab v1.1 right now in the Marketplace here. (Thanks, Philipp, for the heads up!)

ps For a laugh, in the Marketplace type in "implus" and see the result.

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IM+ drops in price to $4.99

Wow, this will either make you thrilled or really ticked off. But yes, if you can actually make it to the Marketplace today (see here), you can grab IM+ for the low, low price of just $4.99 (see our video tour). Actually, for the quality of that app and services, we think that is a fair price. No telling if it's a temporary price drop or permanent.

For those of you who remember, IM+ launched about two weeks ago for a whopping $10, a price that most of us scoffed at (even we passed). Either SHAPE Services noticed that it wasn't selling well, or the competition (i.e. Kik Messenger) made them change their mind.

So if you passed over before, now seems like a good time to reconsider. Of course, if you paid the $10 we really wish we could give you a hug right now, since you're down about $5 this week. Get you purchase-on right here in the Marketplace. (Thanks, NarutoFan, for the tip!)

Update: For those who are not seeing the price drop, sorry, not sure what to say. Here it is in the Marketplace.

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IM+ hits the Marketplace with a bang

We mentioned the other day that ShapeServices had submitted the popular messaging app, IM+, for Marketplace certification. Apparently the certification has gone smoothly and IM+ for Windows Phone 7 is now available.

Now before you gasp at the price, if memory serves me correctly IM+ for Windows Mobile pushed $20. Knowing that may make the $9.99 price tag for the Windows Phone 7 app easier to swallow.

Still, at $9.99 one can argue it is still one heck of a deal to get AIM, Facebook, Google Talk, ICQ, Jabber, MySpace, Skype and Yahoo! messaging support all under one roof. While there's not a trial version available, you can get a feel for IM+ without our video tour.

You can find IM+ in the Marketplace by searching for "im plus all in one messenger" from your Marketplace App or hit this link (opens Zune) for the Marketplace.

Our thanks to siggystyle for the tip!

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IM+ was submitted to the Marketplace today, and we are all excited for it’s arrival (see our hands on video tour). It just cannot get approved quickly enough. But the developers, Shape Services, announced today that it will not have Windows Live Messenger support. The reason? Microsoft doesn’t allow it. They are seemingly taking Apple’s approach, and not allowing apps that they think will duplicate functionality. Of course, that functionality doesn’t exist yet, so maybe there is something else going on that we don’t know about. It is worth nothing that IM+ for Windows Mobile also doesn't support Windows Live Messenger, so it's not an OS thing.

On one hand, we all know that WLM will be one of the built in services in Mango, so the support will be seamless, and most likely excellent. On the other hand, it sure would be nice to be able to use the service now. Although Skype has more users, Windows Live Messenger is no slouch, with an estimated 330 million active users, more than AIM or Gtalk (at least, according to Wikipedia). The sooner those users see feature parity with iOS and Android, the better.

Source: Tej Palladino Peters (Facebook); via: WMPoweruser

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