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Did presence ever really work though? I’ve been online since the late 90s and I don’t remember ever considering it reliable except perhaps for people on IRC who I knew had a transient internet connection (namely dialup).

I’ve never really paid much attention to or trusted presence status, with the exception of statuses that are manually set (e.g. do not disturb in Slack and similar).

It’s kind of funny, considering that presence is probably the most challenging technical requirement for large-scale messaging platforms. I will say that my two most-used messaging platforms, iMessage and Slack, both usually do a great job of delivering push notifications to only the ideal device (my phone, tablet, or computer). My intuition is that this logic is roughly the same as presence.




AIM handled presence quite well- custom "away" messages, easily editable "profiles" which were like a .plan file to include a note about where you were logged in, idle timers, icon to tell if an IM was forwarded to a cell phone. Finally while it lacked anything like Slack has to store your messages centrally and persistently, AIM would notify a user when you logged on to more than one location and allow remote logoff of your other sessions to ensure subsequent messages only went to your current session.

I'm glad you've been blessed with whatever Apple Magic lets iMessage work across devices for you but between my iPad iPhone and MacBook all I can say is I follow up important messages with a phone call because it's one of the more unreliable and indecipherable systems I've never been able to figure out.


The best is when as an android user that has an iPad, texts sent to you from an iPhone will go to the iPad that gets opened maybe once a week and not to your phone.

No going half-way into that ecosystem.


It’s interesting that your iMessage experience is much worse than mine. I’ve seen some weird behavior, but generally only on very spotty connections.

Facebook Messenger definitely does the best job. I believe it shows the delivery status of every single message.




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