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What happened to HipChat? It was already the same thing as Slack for less money.

It seems it stagnated. There wasn’t a real competitor to it until Slack turned up and developed a fantastic integration ecosystem (I don’t think there would be such a focus on conversational UI were it not for Slack, whether or not they intended that). By that time it was already too late, HipChat is old school, Slack is the new hotness.

Anecdotally, anyone working in a startup with an opinion on design will know how shallow a judgment has to be to switch to a competitor. App is functional but has 2008 design? The less functional equivalent with 2017 design is better because it looks up to date

There were also performance issues with HipChat, that Slack didn't have: messages went undelivered, load times unbearable etc. (at least in Sydney where we only just got speeds faster than broadband)

FWIW, I observed that 'conversational UI' and chatbots came from the western tech industry trying to 'learn' from the successes of Asian platforms like WeChat.

I observed chatbots in IRC probably before you were born.

I'm sure you did.

That's completely irrelevant though.

There's nothing new here but the packaging.

Yeah, no kidding. My last company was up in arms to replace HipChat with Slack even though they were 99% identical. There hasn't been a significant innovation in chat technology in like 30 years yet the business sector is more frothy than ever.

The core tech hasn't changed a ton, but slack is a good chat program for how people use computers in the modern age. If it encourages communication among your organization it's probably worth adopting, even at the higher price. I don't have numbers, but I was in an organization the switched and mobile use of slack was higher than hipchat.

Having extensively used both, Slack really is much better. Hipchat has a ton of reliability/usability issues and it’s clear _consumer-like_ product design is not Atlassian’s forte.

Also, HipChat circa 2016 was forced on my acquired company that had previously used slack. What a piece of shit that app is. HipChat just nuked the battery life on my stock nexus phone.

I had never before gotten in an argument about a chat app, but HipChat made me passionate about using anything else.

I use it at my work and it works reliably ok on the desktop, but yes I agree the mobile app (at least the iPhone one) is absolutely garbage.

That said from everyday desktop use it’s not bad. It’s nowhere near as unreliable for me as other posters are commenting about.

To be fair, Hipchat is missing a lot of features that Slack has.

That’s exactly the point, right? Slack turned up and offered more and HipChat didn’t respond in a meaningful way except to rewrite all their clients in JS. At that point they had a buggy client and fewer features, while Slack had an inefficient client with lots of features.

I was referring to the (weirdly opposed) example they mentioned with the better-looking-fewer-features.

Like what? 99% of usage is just chat rooms. I could hook in build notifications and post gifs. HipChat had voice and video years before Slack.

Before I list everything: posting gifs is garbage. Things like giphy integration degrade the signal-to-noise ratio, and I rage against it in every chat app I use. Even in off-topic rooms it'll random make following a conversation annoying at best.

Anyway, hipchat's faults:

Search is garbage.

Editing a message is garbage.

Joining a room/messaging a specific person on mobile is annoying.

I'm not sure about how Slack handles it, but when a person leaves our company, our Hipchat chat history completely disappears. All those decisions we made with our old Product Manager via private message? Into the ether.

Want to delete a file you uploaded? Too bad. Maybe you can do it via the web interface?

Want to delete a message? Same deal.

Hipchat is not very good at notifications and chat though.

3 years in, and still randomly missing messages for a while until it’s somewhat synched.

Whole ongoing conversations don’t appear on other devices if I don’t manually open them.

Getting notified on my phone while I’m on my laptop.

Lack of integrations is the most sailant thing to point st, but I think at its core Hipchap is also a very meh service.

We switched to Slack the day Hipchat went down for several hours.

I was really disappointed when noticed they didn't have a way to report bugs. They had some kind of "Suggestions box", so I used that to report mine: Images wouldn't upload correctly when the chat room name started wih a slash (/dev/null in my case). They deleted the ticket and a few days later it was magically fixed.

You will find pretty annoyed people if you search for "report hipchat bug".

Slack’s /feedback is stupendous. You get a human response in minutes. And they have live chat too.

Google for example makes it 1000x harder to give feedback and report bugs, which greatly limits the amount of quality feedback they get.

Anecdote: hangouts didn’t let us accept external users into a hangout today. Google will never know that because I have no easy way to tel them that.

> "I'm annoyed they didn't use my wording. They did fix my bug but I'm still annoyed."

In what world would one imagine that a suggestions box was in any way different from reporting a bug? "Suggestions box" is a bug report but renamed to be understood by Joan from accounting.

The thing about the HipChat suggestions box is that you had to collect "votes" for your "suggestion" to be considered.

So you could try to get their attention to the bug of "when you paste XML into a code block, it replaces it with subtly different, broken XML, my suggestion is to stop doing that", but it's going to be sitting several pages beyond "please add a left shark emoji!!!"

You can try to get your whole office to stack the vote, but why? I only have to be one person to report a bug to Slack.

Anecdata: The SaaS service I run has integrations with both -- Slack has literally 10x the number of integrated channels.

You integrated slack 10x more in your SaaS?

My understanding was 10x more of his users integrate with slack than hipchat.

I believe they are in the process of sunsetting HipChat. It was not successful.

They gave us a deadline to move (~2000 users). So we're just getting the Slack business case ready.

If we have to move AND pay more money anyway, then why not just go to Slack?

A quick look at the prices, Stride is under half the price of Slack. No idea if quality correlates with price here since I've never touched Stride.

I don't know about Stride, but the quality of Slack has really been declining lately. Especially the quality of the desktop client.

If I was in charge of the decision for what communication tool to use at my company, I would take a long hard look at every single alternative to Slack.

I believe it's cheaper, isn't it?

You might also look at mattermost, if you are OK with hosting yourself (it's not hard, and upgrades are easy).

have you considered rocket chat? It's a slack you can either have hosted for you, or host in house.

I thought Stride was the same price as Hipchat?

They say they are working to improve hipchat, but only for datacenter, no more hosted.

Stride is just re-branded HipChat.

Stride was designed and built from ground up (not just a rebrand). I work at Atlassian, and have been using to since alpha.

I know it sounds silly but I believe the main reason for HipChat failing is mostly because the name was so uncool.

More likely it's just that HipChat isn't a great product experience.

As an example, the only way to edit a message is to use a sed-style "s/foo/bar", which is absurd. Because of this, you can't edit messages other than the most recent one, and if you want to edit one instance of "foo" but not another instance of "foo" you're out of luck. That's a terrible piece of UX even if you're in the only subset of users (software devs familiar with sed-style search and replace) where it makes any sense whatsoever

One time I was trying to correct and "its" that should've been an "it's", but I didn't realized there was a preceding, correct "its" in the post. I ended up changing that "its" to an incorrect "it's", while also leaving the following incorrect "its". It was inconsequential, but very frustrating.

As a sibling comment said, the main reason my team abandoned Hipchat for Slack was Hipchat was hopelessly buggy and unreliable at the time we tried to use it.

Um, you should have sed’d the whole sentence! J/K: totally absurd.

Uptime wasn't the greatest at a critical moment when Slack was gaining market share as well.

Yeah. HipChat's stability was absolutely abysmal for quite some time. They seem to have finally gotten it under control. That or a majority of their user base went elsewhere.

Barry Warsaw's law of names: "All names are stupid until you become rich and famous with it."

HipChat is a terrible name for a work-related collaboration tool, but "Slack" isn't great either....

But slack is?

We were on HipChat but went to Slack because Stride was lacking compared to HipChat.

They're trying to say it's not while also saying it's an "upgrade".

I guess it is a new major release of HipChat (with re-architecting) and re-branding. Same lead (Steve Goldsmith).

Unless an insider tells, we won't know I guess :)

An insider did tell, trust Hacker News :) - Steve Goldsmith himself.


Not at all--unless you consider building an entirely new product from the ground up a re-brand.

Joke's on them, we're still using Stash at my employer!

I rather like Stash. It has nice integration with Jira, and works fine.

Stash works fine in precisely the same sense that lynx is a perfectly capable web browser. It's not wrong, but you have to admit that it's missing a number of 'modern' features that many users have grown accustomed to.

The more recent offering (Bitbucket Server) falls behind the curve as well, even when compared to their own Bitbucket Cloud service.

Stride is a complete rewrite.

We are considering this for the solely because it is has screen sharing built in at the free level. In Slack, we would have to bump up to the paid level, and for our small team, the price jumps from free to $600+. The "decisions" and "tasks" features look like they might be nice (in theory). The largest thing holding us back is that many of us use Slack for other groups, which means Stride would be one more thing to run. A killer feature would be the ability to participate in Slack workspaces.

Any sources on that? I'm pretty sure it's a heavy re-architecting at the very least, but if it's the same team and lead, have they gone entirely from scratch or repurposed some of Hipchat's code? (just questioning)

Not curious enough to do the kind of blackbox exploration folks at https://webrtchacks.com or other sites do :)

I believe I am a pretty good source. :)

Stride is a brand new product (not a rebrand of Hipchat), we did not repurpose Hipchat's code. It's built from ground up on Atlassian platform - new protocol, clients, platform, etc. One exception is the video bridge technology which remains powered by the Jitsi.org open source product (which we acquired in 2015). I do look after both products (Hipchat Cloud and Stride) for Atlassian, happy to answer questions.

Thank you, indeed you are :) . Good luck ! Maybe you can convince the higher ups at my office that Microsoft Teams is an inferior product :) (we're already invested with Jira and Confluence so it's not a stretch...)

Would have been a shame not to use the Jitsi technology for sure, I deeply respect Emil Ivov and team.

Stride looks first-rate. Hopefully opening up APIs will bring integration on-par with Slack. What's the plan for bringing Stride to self-hosted options?

So I was told at your last conference that your going to be going to a RHEL instead of the current Ubuntu. I can’t seem to get an answer on what the timeline is for that. My director is signaling to look at other options and I really don’t want to do that. I mean will it be in next 6 months? We are looking at a huge commitment.

I love the decisions and actions features. I was wishing for those today in our project chat setup!

hi steve

We're still running Hipchat at work, and haven't gotten any "switch now, peasants" emails.

The industry needs a meme/graphic for this frequently broadcast communication.

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