I have changed the suggested title to match the real title of the article.
It makes me sad there there are so many different instant messaging platforms in common use today and they are all proprietary and unfederated walled gardens.
I would like for something like XMPP to be successful, but it seems more and more unlikely as time goes on.
I until recently would have agreed. However, I think that Conversations on Android showed that you can make a good client that people seem to be able to agree upon. Having something like that (a dominant, fully featured, yet simple to use) application, maybe web application could make things better again when using XMPP.
If not I hope that Matrix picks up some steam. It looks promising, however I think it’s too early. Currently the clients are very rough around the corners and only techy people seem to use it. That’s not a complaint, other than against myself, for not helping out - or not having time to.
This is all based on the assumption that the major reason for not using XMPP is the lack of easily working desktop/mobile sync, especially in combination with encryption. OMEMO to me is the best thing that has happened in a while.
I’ve sometimes thought that the only reason we have good email interoperability is because there was no profit in running email systems back when the standard was written.
It seems that there’s no way to create a commons once a market develops. (I’m happy to be proven wrong, and would love to see counterexamples!)
XMPP is evolving with the times. You can now get end-to-end encryption, and mobile-friendly optimizations that minimize polling and save battery life.
Android client: https://conversations.im/
iOS client: https://chatsecure.org/
Eventual codebase unification: https://chatsecure.org/blog/chatsecure-conversations-zom/
Riot/Matrix isn’t XMPP but is similarly open: https://matrix.org/docs/projects/client/riot.html
Not to mention KakaoTalk, WhatsApp, and LINE, which are crazy popular in places that aren’t the US.
You listed Snapchat twice!
I think there is a slight difference with iMessage. When it comes to the Mac app, you could plug in all sorts of services that had XMPP as their baseline. This fell apart over time as Facebook, Google, etc. all closed up and in the High Sierra version of Messages you can only add smaller Jabber/XMPP services.
For a lot of those services, they did start out as open XMPP services, but it’s likely the case that they realized they didn’t want the competition on the client side.
I think part of the issue has been XMPP’s lack of adoption of new market features, and how hard it’s been to keep up with the pace of innovation throughout the entire XMPP federated network. If those challenges can be made simple, I’d expect there to be an increase in adoption. I don’t know if that would be enough to start chipping away at the network effect however.