Meebo has just launched a new Firefox extension so that you can instant message right from the sidebar of your browser. While this makes it convenient to have access to your favorite IM clients like AIM, MSN, Yahoo!, Google Talk, ICQ, and Jabber, there are a few things that could be improved to make this extension even better. Seeing as this is their first extension though, I think you’ll be impressed with what it offers.
Once you install the extension (download here), you’ll be able to select which chat client you’d like to sign into. Once you sign-in, a new Meebo tab will automatically open in your browser. This is where all of your chat windows will be. When I mentioned that Meebo could certainly improve on a few things, this is one of them. It would be nice if you could keep the chat window open in the sidebar, or maybe even have your conversations tabbed right along with your other opened tabs in the browser instead of having all your conversations opened in the one Meebo tab. The current setup is almost like just going to their site to chat, but you have the convenience of being able to view all of your contacts in the sidebar which is always open.
While there are some improvements that need to be made, it does have some great features, so lets take a look. Using the Meebo extension, you can chat with a group of people, send a file, view chat logs, and view a user’s profile. There’s also an automatic sign-on feature that will sign you in when you open the browser. Meebo alerts will let you know when you have a new message if you’re viewing another tab. If you’re on a different tab and you receive a message, the tab will flash, but you’ll also see a red bubble next to the persons name in the sidebar displaying how many new messages you have from them.
Overall it’s a really great extension, and a nice addition from Meebo to make chatting easy no matter where you are.
Thanks for the tip Radu!