Curated by: Luigi Canali De Rossi

Thursday, October 31, 2002

Online Audio Conferencing and Chat Rooms

= worth knowing
Online Service
FREE + paid options

Dressed like an instant messenger, you would never think that this tool is capable of providing live audio and video conferencing, virtual discussion rooms, interoperability with AOL IM (instant messenger), video mail and more features.

And if you want to hear an online CB (Citizen band) environment, categorized by topics and interests you may want to spend a little time looking at Paltalk.

Paltalk is an online service that allows its users to talk live online inside virtual chat rooms. If you are not familiar with online audio conferencing or with accessing audio communities this may prove to be quite an interesting experience at the beginning. You must of course be equipped with an appropriate headset or microphone and speakers connected to your computer.

I would suggest that you try logging onto such services only if you have at least a stable 20 Kbps line. While I have seen people attending with even less, below 10 Kbps you really can't do much. Today's audio codecs and new compression algorithms allow for some quality audio to be used on these new services without the need for a broadband or even ISDN connection.



The interesting aspects are mostly cultural and anthropological, in the sense that what could struck me the most is the nature of people topics, rants and online discussions that takes place in these kind of online communities.

The service comes in a free basic version, which is plagued by a barrage of promotions and ads for the paid service, which allows people to meet and exchange by utilizing also their webcams.

The audio quality is quite acceptable, though it will vary according to your Internet connection speed as well as to the traffic on the Paltalk servers.

Overall I have been quite disappointed with this online service and would not at present recommend it if not again to get a glimpse of a different type of online community, in which you can still appreciate the novelty of people interacting together for the first time through a virtual medium.

My disappointment is due to the excessive commercial nature and promotions received while using the service, the not intuitive organization of chat rooms and facilities which requires a bit of playing around. The apparent non-existent customer support.

To look at PalTalk basic features go to: WhatIsPalTalk/Features/Features.htm

To see some sample screenshots go to: WhatIsPalTalk/ScreenShots/ ScreenShots.htm

To download your free PalTalk client software go to: download.html (959 KB)
or directly at: download/0.x/pal_install.exe

Do you want to talk with crystal clear voice to anyone around the world with a PC connected to the Internet?

Readers' Comments    
2004-09-01 23:47:10


i don't really know what ur into.please i want u to enlighting about ur organisation

posted by Robin Good on Thursday, October 31 2002, updated on Tuesday, May 5 2015

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This work is licensed under a Creative Commons License.




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