iChat Features Hidden Within iPhone OS 4.0
Numerous sources are now confirming that there are some hidden iChat features and commands found inside of iPhone OS 4.0 that could be a clear sign that we may see a iPhone/iPod iChat app from Apple.
By watching some of the processes running on the new firmware, an process by the name of iChatAgent was found running in the background along with some additional iChat code. Could this be video calling? Or will it only come with iPhone 4G? Both the code and a separate tip to 9to5Mac have also referenced an Apple-run site that, along with three internal sites, are likely being used to host and test video on the iPhone. An unconfirmed but thorough insider maintained that the site is waiting for a "jingle" from the iChat app itself to initialize the feature; without information about the app's presence and connection quality it won't do anything.
9 to 5 Mac has also shown references within the SDK to features such as moderators, chat rooms, encrypted video conferences, and more. Digging even further, the same notification noises that the desktop iChat application uses, can actually be found in the SDK as well.
They even found what they believe to be an Apple iPhone Video Chat server at the following address:
Trying to connect to it will however not get you anything since it would be meant to work with iChat on the iPhone.
Of course, we saw some similar video chat hints from good ol iPhone 3.2 which were soon pulled from Apple. So who knows, this could all just be a misunderstanding form the devs and Apple's inability to inform developers of what they have to work with. Or it could be the real thing. We'll find out soon enough I'm sure.
On another note, you might be asking "Big Deal! Who Uses iChat Anyways?". While iChat does require a mobile me account, Apple has recently announced that it is now adding "Aliases" to MobileMe user accounts. This means that a MobileMe user can create up to 5 different email accounts. This should open the door for more users starting to use iChat. iChat works incredibly well on the Mac, so I'd love to see it on the iPhone OS.