The first version of a native AIM client for the iPhone was released today under the GPL2 license! It’s based on the libFiretalk IM library, and it currently provides basic chat functionality. This snippet from their project page is interesting, though:
The overall direction of the project is to get libPurple compiled for the iPhone and move to it asap in order to provide more than AIM. Firetalk’s old and unmaintained, while Purple has a community devoted to it.
The idea is to provide an “Adium” for the iPhone, and we’re moving towards it.
Real IM is the killer app for this device, and it’s stilla wonder to me that iChat wasn’t included in the standard OS build. Perhaps this project will put some pressure on Apple to release an iPhone-based iChat in a future update.