I have just been forced to download the new versions of Yahoo and MSN messenger, since Fire (and, I assume, all third-party clients relying on the new yahoolib code) were booted off Yahoo's network.
Needless to say, I am not pleased. Both clients are crammed to the brim with needless features, take up a lot more screen real estate than Fire, and to top it all, the MSN client looks like assorted pieces of blue and green Jell-O stuck together.
None of them allow you to remove extraneous toolbars (which take up to one fifth of a normal-sized chat window), customize fonts consistently or even have alerts pop up the same way. Yahoo is particularly irritating in that regard, since the alert sounds are hideously shrill and I can't even customize them (something the Windows version has since... day one?).
At least with IRC (hideous though it still is) you could pick your own client software.
I'm not sure if this or this is yet another Newton/BeOS ressurrection story, but the truth is that Palm has been pushing for increased screen sizes and features that do make sense in a larger tablet format. All I know is that I've been looking at stuff like the SIMpad SL4 myself - it just makes a lot of sense, now that Wi-Fi is commonplace.
And While We're on The PDA Topic...
Russel Beattie points to more news of mobile Flash and rants on a bit about Palm - which has been getting a lot of coverage and lobbying on the press, probably ramping up for the new October releases.