a public beta release offered in early February, Apple on Tuesday released
iChat AV v2.1, the latest version of its instant messaging software for users of Mac OS X. The new version can be downloaded through the Software Update system preferences pane or from Apple’s Web site.
iChat AV offers users of Mac OS X v10.3 “Panther” audio, text and video conferencing capabilities. iChat users can communicate not only with each other but also with anyone else using AOL Instant Messenger (AIM), either PC- or Mac-based.
iChat AV has, since its initial public preview release last year, provided iChat users with the ability to communicate using text messages, audio communications using microphones, or one-to-one video using Apple’s iSight camera or other FireWire-based Webcams and camcorders. Up until last month’s public preview release, however, iChat communication with PC users didn’t include video.
The new release of iChat AV now provides that functionality, thanks in part to AOL’s release of AIM 5.5 for Windows.