Chat Updates Make WP a Fully-Functional Live Platform

Our developers are always working hard to improve our plugins, and today we’re super excited to announce HUGE updates to our Chat plugin.

Since we last updated you on Chat’s features, the plugin now includes the ability to control where chats appear, full BuddyPress integration, significant front-end display improvements, chat logs displayed on the front-end (helping SEO!), specific bottom corner chat features and some very important under-the-hood improvements.

Improvements to Chat

In June last year we unveiled features that made Chat faster, sleeker and more customizable than ever before. We listened to member feedback and we’ve made Chat even better for users who wishing to turn their site into a fully-functional live and interactive platform.

Front-End Display Improvements

Live Support
We use the Chat plugin for our Live Support sessions. Check out our Live Support calendar to join the next chat session.

You asked for it and we delivered – Chat now display both a user’s avatar and name. Admins can also now hide the moderator footer completely, stop users from expanding the text area, prevent the pop out chat on individual chat sessions and choose whether to split or combine a moderator list.

  • New: Added logic to users list to control height of box
  • New: Added display options for users list for moderator and user list output, split or combined lists
  • New: Added option to show user avatar and name on message output
  • New: Added option to hide pop out chat on individual chat sessions
  • New: Added options to hide moderator message options (block IP, delete, private chat) on individual chat sessions
  • New: Added options to lock the size of the the textarea input to prevent user resizing
  • New: Added option for No Auth View and No Login, allowing users to view chat message and users without having to login or participate in chat

Easier to Access Chat Logs

In earlier versions of Chat, any user could see/participate in a chat session. We’ve changed that. Earlier versions also displayed chat logs below the chat box and this was using too much space. We’ve updated this to allow admins to show a simple link to chat logs instead. Display your chat logs and boost your SEO!

  • New: Added logic to control what level of users can view chat archive logs shown below a chat session
  • New: Added new log display options on individual chat session set up

Control Where Chats Are Displayed

New Chat options
Admins can now control the display of chat within the WordPress admin area.

These new options all you to prevent chat sessions from showing on various URLs. For example, you might want to prevent the bottom corner chat from showing on a page where a shortcode is used, and similar for widgets.

  • New: WP Admin panel in Settings to control the display of chats within WP admin area
  • New: Option to hide on URLs where shortcode is used
  • New: Option to include/exclude widget chats on specified URLs
  • New: Option to include/exclude bottom corner chats on specified URLs
  • New: Option to prevent loading of JS/CSS where chats are not displayed. By default, JS/CSS is loaded on all URLs

BuddyPress Features

BuddyPress
We’ve added a heap of new BuddyPress features that allow you to control the look and feel of live chat.

We’ve really beefed up the way Chat works with BuddyPress. Now you can define some default settings for group chat, with settings inherited each time a new group is added, as well as control some chat settings within profile pages. Admins can also see all users and initiate private chats directly, regardless of their friendship status.

  • New: Control BuddyPress group page slug and menu label values
  • New: Added Chat options to BuddyPress profile settings to control chat status and visibility
  • New: Added logic to BuddyPress members listing to display status for all users, not just user’s friends if the viewing users is site admin
  • New: Added logic to BuddyPress group chat to show chat session archive logs

Specific Bottom Corner Chat Features

When the bottom corner chat is minimized, the number of new messages received since the chat was hidden is now displayed. This feature can be switched off for sites low on server resources.

  • New: Added count for new messages on minimized bottom corner chat
  • New: Added option to stop polling for new messages when minimized bottom corner chat

Under-the-Hood Improvements

In previous versions of Chat, when a user posted a message there was a server hiccup during the AJAX send and the message was lost. Now the message is retained until a successful confirmation from the server. Chat also now has timers for how often new messages are checked versus meta information.

  • New: Added retry logic to AJAX init and message_update process for better handling of server errors
  • New: Added polling timers and settings options for Chat invites and Chat meta information to prevent excessive queries during each message polling interval

Download Chat today and turn your WordPress site into a fully-functional live platform.