Shutting down our XMPP chat service | FastMail Blog
Be interesting to hear some points of view and discussion around this.
From the start XMPP was just for internal needs in my company. And it still stays strongly (even against Skype for Business). Mostly because of its price. Zero Well, not counting my hours pured into it, but it works flawlessly most of the time. Skype is pricey, Slack is not free either. IRC? Obsolete technology.
It was nice to hear about the federation stuff 10 years ago, but even then i was skeptical about this and now it is obvious that big players doesn't want a free and ad-free alternative in their network. So be it. XMPP is still great to use in a corporate environment.
Yet another email provider dropping XMPP support :-(. United Internet (@web.de, @gmx.net, ...) has shutdown their XMPP servers as well since 01.12.2014. It's sad, but their reasoning is comprehensible.
XMPP software is usually free, but it's technical maintenance and support is not. If only a few hundred people use, it's just not worth it.
The downside of being free is also, that it always feels lacking behind proprietary software. As the article said, users demanded support for extensions, which are not yet implemented.
As a small example: Skype has supported "Last Message Correction" for a long time, maybe even since I use it (around 2005). The equivalent XEP-0308 has been first published in 2013, which doesn't mean any client will implement it any time soon (Spark will certainly not).
XMPP development speed is slow, because its software is often maintained by hobbyists (see Spark, Openfire, Smack, ...).
XMPP's idea is great, but (big) company's appearently have the money and interest to invent their own (better) solutions and people then rather use them.
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