Kik Messenger solves a critical problem that has plagued many texting apps, namely, it is cross-platform enabled. This is a big bonus in a market where most messenger apps suffer from proprietary restrictions and, as such, immediately limit their appeal to that universe of like-minded OS users.Kik Logo

Kik is also a nod to the changing dynamics of cell phone social interaction, where users have little patience when it comes to brand-limited applications, especially where it involves direct communication.

Kik provides a robust solution for folks looking for a way to communicate across the three primary OS platforms: iOS, BlackBerry and Android. It's a smart, hungry app backed by developers who appear genuinely interested in upgrades and adjustments that hope to make Kik an "obvious", simple solution in a market that changes daily.

When measuring Kik purely on merit, it holds up well. In addition to being very easy/intuitive to use, it notifies you when you first sign up of other contacts that may be on Kik. Also, running in the background without draining your battery, Kik alerts you to new messages via a crisp notification bar.

Most recently, Kik Messenger has added group chat for up to ten people and picture sharing. All that, plus cross-platform capability, and this is one messaging app that you'll want to consider.

Kik 2For folks who are currently using traditional text messages to communicate, Kik will be a welcome treat. Your messages will be sent/received quickly and you'll be notified when your messages have been read. It even informs you when a recipient is typing back. What a welcome change from the void left from traditional texting the moment you hit "send".

When I test drove Kik I was surprised to discover how many of my friends were already using it. It was easy to use and offered a number of meaningful options. I especially enjoyed the "bubbles" in which Kik displayed texts, and the alternating colors that made following a thread even easier. Having a photo next to each bubble of the person I was talking to rounded out the experience and made it that much more personal. Kik had a finished, top-shelf feel and was a superior experience to the basic, paid texting avenue I had been using for so long. Better and free? Wow. No contest.

Conclusions

While it excels as a free and feature-rich texting solution, Kik still has some ground to gain regarding sending and receiving some multimedia. But the developers seem ready for the challenge and, judging from over a million downloads in just 15 days, this hearty messenger app will be around and growing for some time to come.