April 23, 2012 | by Andrew Kameka
Evaluated version: 1.02
Pros: Floats resizable, re-positionable IM window for quicker multitasking
Cons: Currently supports only GTalk, no color customization
Have you ever had to instant message someone while you were trying to do something on a tablet? The notifications on Android allow you to quickly be updated when someone sends a new message, but there may be times that you don’t want to have switch back and forth between the Google Talk app and another app.
Lilypad HD is the solution for those situations. Available for $1.49, the app allows Android 3.0 or higher tablets to have a floating window to continue the conversation. Similar to how you can pin a window on PC’s or keep afloat on a Mac, Lilypad maintains a persistent window for your GTalk conversation or buddy list. This lets you have a persistent view of the conversation and still watch a YouTube video, browse the web, or anything else.
Users can customize Lilypad HD to suit their needs at the moment. Windows can be resized or repositioned to not obstruct critical viewing areas. They can also be minimized, or the app can be closed by tapping the icon twice. While chatting with some people over the weekend, I sometimes forgot to respond because I’m so use to hearing a notification sound from the default GTalk app. Be sure to avoid that problem by going to the settings menu and enabling Sound or vibrations to update whenever a new message arrives.
Lilypad HD probably appeals to a small group of people who often use GTalk on their tablet and don’t want to deal with jumping from app to app. I would prefer the ability to use darker colors so the white and gray color scheme isn’t so jarring when using YouTube, but the overall utility of the app is worthwhile. Another positive to take is that while Google Talk is the only platform currently support, other IM services might arrive later.