I used to be an avid user of Trillian, but they currently don't support group chats for Google and that's a deal breaker for me. So I'm currently looking for a new app (or combination of apps) that meets the following criteria:

  • Must support Google Hangouts for both single user chats and group chats
  • Must have an always on top feature
  • Must have configurable notification settings (I don't want a sound every time someone sends me a message)
  • Must support tabbed chats
  • Must be a standalone desktop application (i.e. not a website)
  • Must be on Windows
  • The contacts list must be hide-able

Also a plus but not required:

  • The app is transparent when not in focus (Trillian does this, I find it very useful)
  • The app supports other IM protocols (i.e. AIM, Skype, etc).

I've tried using the two Google Hangout apps (first and second), but they both fail. The first is too big and clunky, and shrinking the window makes the app unusable because the opened tabs don't shrink down as well.

The second comes close, particularly when I used it with always on top, but it can't do tabbed chats.

So are there any other IM clients out there that suit my needs?

  • Hangout chats in Inbox or Google+ can be popped out and converted into browser tabs. always on top and transparency features can easily be added with third party programs. It's not a standalone desktop application, but it meets your other requirements – Tymric Jul 21 '15 at 13:29

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