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LibraryH3lp is software used by libraries, educators, and non-profits for better customer service.

Friday, January 15, 2021

Updates to the Chat Box for Guests

We recently announced a new emoji set for the chat box that guests use on your website and teased that there were more changes to come. We've made good on that promise with even more chat box improvements. 

These improvements are being rolled out progressively across our service regions.

  • released January 15, 2021
  • released January 29, 2021
  • released January 31, 2021
  • (main server): coming soon!

Simplified Mobile Experience

Previously, we offered two separate layouts for the chat box -- one layout was shown to guests chatting using a desktop or laptop and one layout that was shown to guests using smaller mobile devices like phones. Now guests will see the same chat box layout no matter what device they choose to use to chat with you.

The history behind the two layouts stems from the early days of mobile where there was spotty support for chat box features such as file upload and even reliably getting the Enter button to send a message. These days mobile devices are much more sophisticated and support for all the chat box features is commonplace.

Bug Fixes

1) The chat box should clearly identify the sender of an uploaded file or image. It used to be that the upload was always attributed to the operator. One caveat with this bug fix is that on occasion the guest may still encounter the original behavior within Chrome; we expect that Chrome will iron out that remaining wrinkle with a future update.

2) When a guest pops out the chat box on a web page (like you can do with our support chat box in the sidebar of this blog) into a separate window, the conversation will update in real time in both places. It used to be that only the operator's messages updated in real time in both places. Now the messages from the guest will also appear.

Embedded chat box screenshot showing the pop-out button

Even more to come!

One last thing... and we've saved the best for last! We are actively developing a next generation chat box. Its default view is sleek and sexy, has built-in offline contact handling, plus a whole bunch of new features that folks have been requesting. More details as well as how to upgrade (if you want to upgrade, no pressure) will follow closer to release. And don't worry, the upgrade won't cost you anything extra -- it's included as part of your base subscription.

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