Messages beta for OS X brings iMessage to the Mac

Messages

Avoid carrier SMS and MMS charges and keep all your IMs in one place with iOS iMessage right on your Mac

If you have been waiting for Apple to release a version of iMessage for Mac then that day has just become a lot closer. After the release of the beta of OS X Mountain Lion earlier today, Apple has followed it up with the release of a beta version of its new Mac Messages app. Messages, which will replace the current iChat app, brings all of the great features of iMessage to your Mac while keeping many that made iChat great as well.

Messages for Mac works just like it does on an iPhone, iPad or iPod touch, running iOS 5. You can send and receive unlimited messages across all of your supported Apple devices. All of your devices will receive the same messages, and copies of messages that you have sent from other devices, so all of your chat messages are in the same place and in-sync, no matter which device you have in your hand at the time. You can start an iMessage conversation on your Mac, continue it on your iPad then finish it on your iPhone or iPod touch while on the go.

Just like the iOS 5 version of iMessage, Messages also lets you send photos, videos, file attachments, contacts, locations and even start a FaceTime call right from the app. Messages also supports a host of other chat services like AIM, Yahoo, Google Talk and Jabber. The Messages app is available today as a public beta so anyone with a Mac running Lion 10.7.3 can give it a whirl.

Messages Beta – Download Now

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chrisoldroyd

UK editor at iMore, mobile technology lover and air conditioning design engineer.

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Reader comments

Messages beta for OS X brings iMessage to the Mac

15 Comments

I can get to the Beta page, but theres no where to download.
"Our apologies but there was an unexpected error with the application. This problem has been noted, and an email has been sent to the administrators. Please check back in a few hours to try the download again."

Link works fine here. This is exciting, although I'd really love a Messages client for Windows, Android, etc. :s

O.K., just downloaded it and sent messages to my daughter and son-in-law who also have iPhones and Macs. However, could not send messages to folks on different platforms. Is this meant to be an Apple user-only app? Or am I doing something wrong?

Can you really finish on your iPhone what you start on the Mac? One of the early downfalls of iMessage for iPhone/iPad users was that the phone was locked to the phone number, and the iPad to the email address, and conversations between the two did not carry over, like they do on Google Voice or a Jabber-based platform.
Has Apple fixed that issue, or do you still have to message one or the other?

I agree and have the same problem. Unless someone knows to "text" your AppleID email address rather than your phone number then the messages do not show up on your other iOS devices. I don't understand why this doesn't work though. In the iMessage settings on the iPhone you can have your phone number AND AppleID. To me that should say the phone number = that AppleID and put the messages on the iPad even if someone sends an iMessage to your phone number. I'm a huge Apple fan, but this was poorly implemented and needs to be fixed. Hopefully iOS 5.1.

I thought I fixed it when I set my phone to automatically route my imessage messages to my apple id but they still don't always come to my ipad.

It would be nice to see these new features (aim, google, yahoo, jabber) added to the iOS messages app.

Downloaded it and trying to set up. Cannot get past the "You can be reached for messages at:" window as the Sign In button is greyed out even though there's a valid email in the email list. Anyone has any idea what I am doing wrong?
Thanks,

Won't let me use more than one e-mail address. When I enter a second it says, "This cannot be used because it's already associated with another Apple ID." Yeah, duh, mine. What's the point of asking for an additional e-mail address to be reached at?

Wont even let me install it.. Says messages beta can't be installed on this disk. This volume does not meet the requirements for this update..
But I'm running on 10.7.3
Any suggestions ??

i have the same problem as some folks here, i'm using my iPhone which has a phone number and apple ID connected to it, and the beta version for the OSX. it seems as if i send a message from my phone, my phone defaults in using my phone number rather than the Apple ID. This get's confusing for the people that i talk to since they will have 2 conversation windows, 1 with my phone number(from iPhone) and one with apple ID (from MB air).