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Live Chat Addon - Which is the best

Discussion in 'Resource and Add-on Discussions' started by david urmann, Nov 29, 2013.

  1. david urmann

    david urmann New Member

    We are thinking of adding live chat to our forum. Can anyone suggest the best addon for this or ones to avoid. Looking now at cometchat. How has this worked for anyone using it. Thanks
     
    Kaynil likes this.
  2. Alfa1

    Alfa1 Well-Known Member

    I would choose a system that has real usergroup permissions. Cometchat does not have this functionality yet, which causes a lot of problems.
    Performance is another issue to consider. Cometchat needs you to use a chat server like their cometservice. Its possible to do without but really bogs down your server if you do not add a chat server. Cometchat has a great feature set. Arrowchat seems to be coded well but does not seem to get much development.
    Here is a list of related chat addons.
     
  3. Martok

    Martok Well-Known Member

    Arrowchat has just had an update and offers pretty much the same features as Cometchat. I've read several comments that it's less resource hungry than Cometchat too. Arrow chap's mobile version comes with all but the starter edition whereas Cometchat requires you to have the second most expensive edition for this. Arrowchat also lets you easily restrict its use to specific usergroups if you wish.

    Currently there's a Black Friday offer until Monday with 20% off everything.
     
  4. david urmann

    david urmann New Member


    Hi Alfa
    Thanks for the feedback and the list of Chat addons. Lots of them on that list. Any that you would highly recommend?
     
  5. david urmann

    david urmann New Member

    Hi Martok
    Sounds like Arrowchat might be a good option. Any other options that you would recommend I look at or is this your favorite?
     
  6. oman

    oman Well-Known Member

    I would definitely reccommend Taiga Chat Pro - http://xenforo.com/community/resources/taigachat-pro-realtime-chat-shoutbox.1224/

    High quality add on there. The reviews speak for themselves.
     
  7. Alfa1

    Alfa1 Well-Known Member

    Arrowchat still has much less functionality than cometchat. Cometchat gets a lot more development updates. But Arrowchat their recent update (which was the only major release this year) has added important functions. I'd be interested in the experiences of other webmasters with Arrowchat.
    One important function cometchat has is to use a third party chat server, like realtime.co or your own APE server.

    Taiga chat is a shoutbox which does not have chat rooms, nor 1to1 chat, nor a chat footer bar.
     
  8. Martok

    Martok Well-Known Member

    I use Arrowchat and I'm happy with it.

    I disagree that it has "much less" functionality. They are pretty much the same now. Arrowchat has a couple of things missing like a desktop chat application and monetizing with ads. I'm not bothered about either of these though, users can chat on the site using the chat bar and advertising comes from Xenforo itself. The big plus for me for Arrowchat over Cometchat is the mobile chat being available for all but the starter version, whereas you have to pay a lot for the Cometchat version that provides this.
     
  9. Alfa1

    Alfa1 Well-Known Member

    Could you tell me which of the following features are available for arrowchat:
    1. Friends list synchronization
    2. Links to User Profiles
    3. Show User Avatars
    4. Smileys, auto-linking and word censoring
    5. Quick search ability for online users / friends
    6. Audio/Video Chat
    7. Screensharing
    8. Block User
    9. Chat History
    10. Chat Time notation
    11. Clear Conversation
    12. Handwrite a message
    13. Report Conversation
    14. Send a file
    15. Smilies
    16. Save Conversation
    17. Transliterate
    18. Whiteboard
    19. Writeboard
    20. Broadcast Video
    21. Chatrooms
    22. Announcements
    23. Facebook Fan Page
    24. Scroll To Top
    25. Share This Page
    26. Translate page
    27. Twitter
    28. Conversation Translation
    29. Mobile App
    30. Facebook and Gtalk Chat
    31. Advertisements
    32. Mobile Tab
    33. Mobile Webapp
    34. Statistics, spy & logs
    Is there anything (besides better integration, less server load) that arrowchat offers and cometchat does not?
     
  10. Martok

    Martok Well-Known Member

    Arrowchat does the following:

    1. Friends list synchronization
    2. Links to User Profiles
    3. Show User Avatars
    4. Smileys, auto-linking and word censoring
    5. Quick search ability for online users / friends
    6. Audio/Video Chat
    8. Block User
    9. Chat History
    10. Chat Time notation
    14. Send a file
    15. Smilies
    18. Whiteboard
    20. Broadcast Video
    21. Chatrooms
    22. Announcements
    23. Facebook Fan Page
    24. Scroll To Top
    25. Share This Page
    26. Translate page
    27. Twitter
    30. Facebook and Gtalk Chat
    33. Mobile Webapp
    34. Statistics, spy & logs

    I don't believe it does these:

    7. Screensharing
    11. Clear Conversation
    12. Handwrite a message
    13. Report Conversation
    16. Save Conversation
    17. Transliterate
    19. Writeboard
    28. Conversation Translation (isn't this the same as 17. Transliterate?!)
    29. Mobile App (it does have a mobile web version though)
    31. Advertisements
    32. Mobile Tab (not sure what this is?)

    I'd say that having answered your queries and seen what Arrowchat doesn't have compared to Cometchat, I wouldn't want those features anyway for my website. They may be useful to some sites but many I suspect wouldn't use most of those.

    Arrowchat will also let you embed chatrooms and private chat into your website so you can use them from there. This is great for tablets where you can disable the chat bar (an option to do this on mobile devices) but users can still chat on your full website rather than use the mobile version.

    As I mentioned, Arrowchat has mobile webapp version which is available on all editions except the starter. Cometchat only appears to have this available to premium edition and above. If this is the case then you would need to pay an additional $124 to get this feature.

    Arrowchat can easily be restricted for use by certain user groups if you wish, something that you seem to suggest isn't so easy on Cometchat.

    Ongoing support costs are different for Arrowchat and Cometchat:
    Arrowchat - purchase includes 6 months of free updates (12 months for business edition). Renewals are then $20 every 6 months. Support tickets - 30/45/365 days included depending on the version, then $4 per month after that (I've never used this and had questions answered on their forums. Obviously they won't give detailed help on the forums)
    Cometchat - purchase includes 1 year of free updates. Renewals are then 50% of the purchase cost.
    So depending on whether or not you will use the support or not will depend on which is cheaper for ongoing cost. For me Arrowchat is definitely cheaper.
     
    Kaynil, ForestForTrees and Alfa1 like this.
  11. Alfa1

    Alfa1 Well-Known Member

    Thanks for clarifying that. Arrowchat certainly is one to watch for me.

    The mobile tab is a function to hide the chat bar to mobile users but to display a chat tab instead. Its very handy to have.
    Reporting a message is vital. Without it abuse goes unreported which allows chat to spiral out of control quickly. I don't understand how Arrowchat can do without it.
    The handwriting function is used a lot by my users. Its an attractive function.
    Using your own chat server is pretty important in these times with NSA leaks, people dont like to have their messages shared with 3rd parties.
     
  12. Martok

    Martok Well-Known Member

    Thanks for clarifying. As I said, Arrowchat lets you hide the chat bar from mobile users (this is optional). Embedded chat rooms and the mobile web app can be used by mobile users instead.


    Although there isn't a reporting feature, you can look up the conversations of any users from the admin panel. Members could then report anything inappropriate and an admin could then find the whole conversation.

    If this is available on tablets then I could see that some may like it. On PCs though I can't see it as handwriting using a mouse isn't very easy. Does the handwritten text get converted to typed text? If not, then users could bypass any word filters.

    It could be useful to some people I guess. Though if you are likely to have so many users then wouldn't just having a more powerful server for your site suffice? That way all of your data is kept in one place.
     
    Alfa1 likes this.
  13. Alfa1

    Alfa1 Well-Known Member

    That will not work well for active boards. Moderators will need to find reports. If its not easy to report an issue then issues will stay under the radar. Due to the dynamic and volatile nature of chat, this should not be let spiraled out of hand. Especially on larger active communities were forum drama can accumulate and escalate in chat rooms..

    Its basically a drawing function. Yes, it bypasses world filters. I had not thought of that. Thanks.

    In theory yes. I already run a private cloud with multiple servers to cater for 3 million monthly users. Adding Cometchat out of the box kills my site as it runs on port80. Once Cometchat is connected to a chat server this is no longer the case.
     
  14. TeflonDon

    TeflonDon Well-Known Member

    Can anyone recommend a good chat addon that can be embedded into a Xenforo page? I don't need anything fancy and don't need it to be used anywhere else on the forum.
     
    Kaynil likes this.

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