If the current crop of chat apps aren’t to your liking, perhaps a new app out today called FireChat will suffice. The app is a hyperlocal chat network for iOS devices that functions even without an Internet connection, allowing users to send text messages and even photos to a group of users or just a single recipient.
The app uses the multipeer connectivity framework built within iOS 7 that allows enabled devices to communicate with each other vial mutlipeer-enabled services like Bluetooth, peer-to-peer connections and Wi-Fi. As it relies on these connectivity methods, the range of the network is only around 100 feet under a best-case scenario.
As pointed out by TechCrunch, there have been similar apps in the past but they’ve all required users to be on the same wireless network. With FireChat, there’s also no need to log in or create an account so you can remain anonymous as you trash talk the opposing team during the next sporting event.
Sporting events are just one usage scenario as there are plenty of other venues that could be useful including conferences, conventions, outdoor festivals, classroom chats and perhaps even dating according to Open Garden CEO Micha Benoliel.
Because there’s no Android equivalent to multipeer, it was easier to build the app for iOS instead of trying to replicate the experience on Google’s mobile OS.
FireChat is available as of writing via the App Store and is available in English, Chinese and Japanese.