Sometimes you want to install a messaging app so that you can just chat about last night’s game with someone in the next office. HipChat will do that for you. Sometimes you want a chat program that will let you send the entire contents of the Pentagon to Wikileaks without anyone else knowing. Tox might just do that for you… although if you get caught don’t blame us. But sometimes you want a chat program that will streamline your development, keep your different programming teams in touch and let your devops people talk in their strange math language without the algebra getting garbled.
If that’s your situation, then Rocket.Chat might well be a good option. While HipChat is very straightforward and Tox is all about security and encryption, Rocket.Chat is aimed at development teams. The private messaging and the group chatting are all taken for granted, and Rocket.Chat also assumes that you might want to talk and video chat with colleagues and friends. That’s all there too, as are file uploads. But the program then throws in a bunch of other tools that make it a closer rival to Slack.
A Helpdesk feature lets customers come in and ask questions, an option that doesn’t only provide a customer support solution. It also gives your customer support team an easy way to obtain answers to difficult questions. When customers and backend staff are on the same platform, solutions are only a contact click away. Links automatically embed destination content, including YouTube videos and tweets.
An API extends the chat to services including Github, GitLab and Confluence, while packages make it easy to add new features and configure the platform for your own needs. Text math rendering allows coders to talk with numbers, and users can share screens. Native applications are available for Mac, Windows and Linux and mobile applications are available for iOS and Android.
So far so Slack, and devops teams that have been using the leading project management/communications system would already be interested in these services. But Rocket.Chat is also open source. So it’s free and easy to build on.
Rocket.Chat is a communications platform built by a community of developers with their own needs in mind. Businesses that aren’t working in code will still find the free chats, video talks, group chats and screen sharing useful. But they’ll be aware that they’re using a tool built for someone else.
|Usability: 8 /10||Speed: 9 /10||Features: 8 /10||Support: 8 /10||Pricing: 10 /10|