MobileMe: New iChat ID Policy...

Discussion in 'Mac Apps and Mac App Store' started by corywoolf, Jun 14, 2008.

  1. corywoolf macrumors 65816

    corywoolf

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2004
    #1
    I was looking through a page on Apple's support site and came across this. It seems Apple has somehow made a deal with AOL to be granted control over MobileMe iChat IDs (ex. yourname@me.com). In a nutshell, this means that (unlike .Mac) when a user doesn't renew the $99 yearly subscription they can no longer login to iChat with their MobileMe ID. While this may not seem like a big deal to some, I don't like the direction Apple is going with new hidden changes like this and the loss of online bookmark syncing.
     

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  2. PlaceofDis macrumors Core

    Joined:
    Jan 6, 2004
    #2
    i don't see how this is hidden. in fact i think its been mentioned before already. and why is it an issue? its not like its a valid email after the subscription ends, and most people who would be using that as an AIM screenname probably already have one. don't forget that AOL is being the accommodating one in this scenario due to it being their service and they now have to make it accept these new user names.... if anything its more their fault than Apples.
     
  3. corywoolf thread starter macrumors 65816

    corywoolf

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2004
    #3
    I have been using my old .Mac AOL IM ID for years now since I stopped using .Mac. That's the only way some old friends know to contact me. Would you like it if your cell phone company didn't allow you to transfer you're phone number to another provider? Probably not. AIM is free and shouldn't lock out users just because the last few characters in their ID are "@me.com". I hadn't seen this in any of the other threads to do with the migration from .Mac to MobileMe, but it sounds like I missed one then. Why are you making it sound like AOL is doing Apple a huge favor here? I don't think AOL has to overwrite (take back) any previous existing screen-names because of the change from @mac.com to @me.com. If anything AOL should be happy that Apple is continuing to use their IM standard as the default for iChat. AOL is probably happy to get thousands of new users from the partnership. AIM is one of AOL's last services that people still use and better yet sign up for. I doubt their are that many new AOL email accounts being created for legitimate uses these days. GMail took over on that front. I agree with you about it not being a valid email address after the subscription ends, but Apple should really have figured out a way to leave the "@me.com" out of the screen-name. I have had a lot of friends ask why on earth I have an email address as my AOL screen-name. Why does Apple even need to tie MobileMe into IM? There is nothing to gain by having an AIM screen-name tied to MobileMe, it actually penalizes the user. I think they just want more control over the different forms of communication so they can have you by the balls like telecoms do. "What's that Johnny? You don't want to renew your subscription with us??? Well have fun creating new accounts for your blog, email, and IM. Then contacting everyone to let them know you changed all your contact info."
     
  4. kolax macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #4
    Difference between switching your phone number is you can still use it. You have no access to the @mac email account, it is just an ID.

    Makes sense for Apple to do this. You can quite easily create a new ID and import all your contacts. I've done this numerous times with WLM.
     
  5. corywoolf thread starter macrumors 65816

    corywoolf

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2004
    #5
    I was saying that what Apple is doing would be like a cell phone company denying you the ability to transfer your phone number to another provider. This isn't about accessing MobileMe email, it's about accessing AOL IM. Apple is giving you a crippled AOL IM account (which is free in the first place). I guess an easy solution is to just pay no attention to Apple's MobileMe AOL IM assigned screen-name and create your own instead. It's just lame that AOL gave into Apple's shenanigans and allowed Apple special access to AIM accounts that are not even on Apple's servers. Apple is just trying to put more pressure on people who have thought about not renewing their subscriptions. iChat ID is just a euphemism for AOL Instant Messenger Screen-name. All Apple does is automatically sign you up for an already free service from AOL and then acts as the middle man so that if you don't pay for their entire service then they cut you off from AOL's free service. It's sleazy and sounds like something AOL would have done back in their day of dial-up supremacy.
     
  6. kolax macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #6
    You are a professional complainer.

    By getting a MobileMe account, you are paying for the email address. If you decide not to renew your subscription, then why on earth would you still want to use that email address for your ID on AOL Instant Messenger?

    That is like using a phone number as an ID, but people not actually being able to send you any messages.
     
  7. kkat69 macrumors 68020

    kkat69

    Joined:
    Aug 30, 2007
    Location:
    Atlanta, Ga
    #7
    Fixed and this makes 100% perfect sense.

    If you no longer have a valid email address connected to the IM ID you should NOT be able to use it.

    Right now, as it stands, it's technically a bug. If an email is no longer valid, the ID shoudn't register and should not be usable. That just makes sense.

    MobileMe is fixing this. I see this as the 'correct' way to do this rather than how it is now.

    If you want to use the phone analogy, it's like getting a phone, canceling the service and you expect to continue to get phone calls. Is that right? NO. For that matter if you don't renew, I would hope the name gets discarded so someone else can pick it up. Same with phone numbers. If you cancel, then you've pretty much put your phone number back in the pool of numbers.

    This is more a fix rather than a 'direction' they are going.

    You can still use an AIM ID instead of a .Mac or MobileMe account and still have access to most if not all the iChat features. Besides aren't AIM id's and .Mac id's are different aren't they? I know people that use iChat with AIM's that don't have .Mac. MobileMe has nothing to do with current AIM accounts. However, if you use a mac.com email in your AOL profile I would suggest changing that ANYWAY since it poses issues in itself.
     
  8. corywoolf thread starter macrumors 65816

    corywoolf

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2004
    #8
    As I said above, Apple just submits your info. and tags on an "@mac.com" or now "@me.com" to AOL. There is nothing gained by having a chat ID through MobileMe, just lost. If Apple started to resell account names that have expired, then it would make more sense. But as of now, Apple will not resell an email address if it was once used under a subscription. I agree that this is a fix, it just makes it inconvenient for some. AOL IM was completely independent of dotMac and should have remained that way. This doesn't personally effect me, I just wanted to hear your opinions. Try logging in through AIM Express in Safari as your dotMac ID or iChat ID as Apple calls it. See what happens... now if Apple truly was on the back-end of your iChat ID, then why does AIM Express or regular AIM for Mac/PC work perfectly with it? The answer is because they aren't on the back-end, they are simply restricting a free service through MobileMe.
     

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  9. kolax macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #9
    You are right, there is nothing gained by having a AIM ID through MobileMe - it is just an email address. And yes, Apple can't re-use email addresses right away because of privacy protection. But what are you rambling on about Apple restricting a free service? See what happens? It works, obviously. And I think you just contradicted yourself by saying "if Apple was truly on your back.......why does it work perfectly".

    Etc.
     
  10. corywoolf thread starter macrumors 65816

    corywoolf

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2004
    #10
    I think you misunderstood me, I'm talking about server-side (aka "back-end"). iChat ID is operating off of AOL's IM servers. You misquoted me too. I never said "if Apple was truly on your back". That's OK though, I am sure it was just a mistake. AIM is a free service, Apple is packaging it as part of a paid service. There is nothing wrong with that, I mean Dell is allowed to sell computers preloaded with free versions of Linux. But then Apple crosses the line by controlling your AOL IM account with no reason other then to punish you for not giving them money. How would you like it if your bank denied you access to your PayPal account (entirely separate company) because you closed your account with them (the bank)?
     
  11. Me1000 macrumors 68000

    Me1000

    Joined:
    Jul 15, 2006
    #11
    And then when someone else comes along and wants that email address that you are no longer using, how is this person able to login to iChat?

    How does apple do it now?


    This action isn't unreasonable, and is actually expected... The fact that Apple did it differently before really surprises me...
     
  12. kolax macrumors G3

    Joined:
    Mar 20, 2007
    #12
    No no no, Apple does not offer all this as part of a package. iChat is free. You do not need a .Mac/MobileMe account to use iChat on your Mac. It is advertised, but not a requirement. You can login or create an AIM account and avoid using Apple's services all together.

    How does Apple package this as part of a paid service? iChat is free! If I used my MobileMe email for Windows Live Messenger (used to be able to), that is exactly the same thing.

    You are paying for MobileMe for all the services, it is just an added benefit that you'll be able to use your MobileMe email on AIM!
     
  13. corywoolf thread starter macrumors 65816

    corywoolf

    Joined:
    Jun 28, 2004
    #13
    Of course I know that iChat works with Jabber and regular AIM accounts. I am saying that Apple markets dotMac and MobileMe to be used with iChat and as you said they call it an iChat ID. The issue isn't iChat, it is that they hold the right to yank your AIM screen-name because they (automatically) registered you for it. And as stated above, Apple isn't going to start selling previously used email addresses anytime soon because of security issues. Imagine someone else takes over your old email and you still have some old friends that think that's still your address. This whole thing is not a huge issue, I was just trying to make a point that Apple is able to penalize AIM accounts created through MobileMe. As long as Apple does some sort of a grandfather clause I am fine with it. I just don't want my long expired dotMac subscription to take away my only AOL IM account because it happens to end in "@mac.com" in the screen-name. AIM isn't a service of Apple so why should they act like it is by calling it an "iChat ID". If Apple created their own IM client or bought out AOL then I would totally understand.

    Edit: I guess I'd just prefer Apple to give the user an option as to stick with the default (MobileMe email address as your AIM screen-name) or to link an already existing AIM screen-name or to create a new independent (not ending in "@mac.com" or "@me.com") screen-name. It might sound ridiculous, but since Apple isn't putting any of the $99 you paid for MobileMe into AOL, they should at least allow users the option of what chat client is linked to their MobileMe account. Plus it would benefit the user by making it less confusing to non MobileMe subscribers. Most people (PC users) gawk when I tell them my AIM screen-name is an email address. They go, "No that's your email address, I want your screen-name." Not everyone wants to use their email address as their screen-name anyways. What if you have a really boring email address for professional reasons, but want a goofy (ex. L1gHtSA8Er1) screen-name? Now Apple is all about simplicity, so making users figure out how to create a new account through AOL's website is not likely. There should be an optional form in the iChat walk-through that allows you to either link an existing account or create a new account all within iChat. After all, if Apple has enough access to AOL's servers to automatically create an AIM account for you, I am sure they could let you manually go through and change the screen-name so it's not ending in "@me.com" or "@mac.com". Then the MobileMe email address would still be linked via the AIM account, but it wouldn't force Apple to lockout users if they don't renew their subscription because the user could simply change the linked email to another email. It would be just like iTunes Store accounts, where the user can change their linked email address. My AIM screen-name, which is my old dotMac address, is linked to my GMail. There is absolutely nothing linked to Apple with it except for the fact that the screen-name contains the characters "@mac.com" at the end.


    Edit 2: eh, I am going to end this thread, the more I think about it... the less I care. I just wish Apple would create their own IM standard and stop with AOL IM. It would simplify things and prevent issues like this one.
     
  14. allpurposeguru macrumors newbie

    allpurposeguru

    Joined:
    Apr 1, 2009
    #14
    The difference here is that Apple has always said that using iChat is free. Their method for giving you an ID for iChat was to have you sign up for .mac, and then you cancel the trial. That way, you can have an iChat id (and not just use an AIM ID on iChat-- AOL's AIM is not quite as friendly as Apple's, for example their namespace is shorter-- I can't even fit my normal ID into AIM, I end up with 'allpurposegur'.)

    It is just irritating that Apple, as usual, tells you ".me" is replacing ".mac" and it will work just the same-- and then you find out later it's not really the same.
     

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