Looking to instantly share your texts, photos and location with friends, supplemented by real-time voice/audio messages? Why not do it via Voxer – a PTT-based instant messenger for iOS and Android that lets you quickly share voice messages with friends in real-time (just like a walkie-talkie), or record your messages to send them automatically upon connecting to the internet. In addition, the app lets you pick multiple contacts to initiate a group chat, and alerts you of all your new messages and friend requests via notifications.
PTT apps are not new to the Android Market. Loudtalks and other similar apps have already provided the Android users with a chance to experience walkie-talkie style conversations from their devices. However, Voxer is different as it adds much sought-after IM capabilities to the concept, along with quite a few other handy sharing features. The app requires internet connectivity of some sorts to work effectively. Also, any contacts whom you wish to add/invite, must have Voxer installed on their devices, too.
The best thing about Voxer is that it requires no prerequisite configuration, and provides you with an option to instantly get yourself connected to the app’s service using your Voxer/Facebook account. Each time you launch the app, it automatically starts syncing data and sends all the pending voice messages to intended recipients.
On the app’s homescreen, you have all your friends listed along with the last message that you shared with them. From the toolbar at the top, you can tap the contacts button to search for new friends (Voxer users) from all across the globe, and/or invite your contacts to Voxer via mail. The pencil button on top-left of this screen lets you start chat with either a single recipient or with multiple contacts. Just pick the contact of your choice, specify a subject and hit the Chat button.
On the chat screen, you have a couple of buttons; the one on the left lets you view all the active participants whereas, the one on the right, if enabled, plays all the voice messages as and when they arrive. At the bottom of this screen, you have a pencil button that can be tapped to start chat via text, supported with images as well as your location and the all-important Hold and Talk button that can be pushed to record a voice message. Recorded messages are instantly shared and can be easily played by tapping the play button. While a message is being played, you can hit the hopping hare icon to you play messages at a faster rate.
Another noteworthy feature of Voxer is that it saves history of all your conversations (supported with all the shared content) and lets you seamlessly play all the audio messages within each conversation. Location-sharing can be enabled/disabled as desired and each shared location can be viewed on map. Shared images can be easily downloaded and are stored on the /scdard/Voxer folder. Apart from viewing a shared image in full-screen, you can also send it to your online buddies by tapping the relevant button.
By long pressing on a conversation from the app’s homescreen, you can easily remove it from the list it or mark all conversations as ‘read’. Doing the same for a contact lets you block and delete him/her from the friends list.
The app, due to its availability across various renowned platforms, content-rich yet extremely easy-to-use interface and swift searching/chatting/sharing capabilities, shows promising signs to become your default IM.
Voxer is available on the Android Market free of cost, and requires Android OS 2.3.3 or higher to run (although support for more devices would be added soon).