Talking Up Apple’s iChat AV

Talking Up Apple’s iChat AV

In fact, calling the iChat AV instant messenger is selling it short, kind of like telling someone Michael Jordan knows how to make free throws. The AV part stands for Visual Audio or Audio Video, depending on who you ask.
So, yes, iChat is an instant messaging software that is efficient for handling traditional text chats. But consider some other iChat tricks:

  • You can exchange files while talking with someone.


  • You can have a free audio conference with up to nine other people.


  • You can participate in a video conference from your Mac desktop with up to three other people.

You need to do at least one of the following to start using iChat:

  • You have an existing AIM or AOL screen name and password: As noted, iChat is linked to the popular instant messaging program from AOL.


  • Get a Jabber ID: You can use the Jabber ID to exchange messages with cohort groups that share the same Jabber servers.


  • Use or Sign Up for a Fee .Mac Account: You can get a free .Mac account only for the purposes of using iChat by sampling all other Mac features on a trial basis.


  • Be on a local network or in a classroom with Apple’s Bonjour technology, formerly Rendezvous: With this built-in technology, iChat lets you see who’s available on your local network to chat. However, Bonjour is used for configuration-free networks via OS X.