Face Time for Mac OS

Alright everyone, I’ve downloaded FaceTime for Mac OS and I’ve tried it out.  For simplicities sake, I’ve tested it with myself.  Now, I know you’ve heard that there are holes.  What’s that you say?  You didn’t hear that?

Well, I’ll go over that after my review.

I downloaded it and installed it.  I then started it by opening the icon, duh, simple enough.

Upon opening and entering my information (user id, Apple id, etc), I am presented with my contact list.

The controls are straightforward.  I dialed myself from my phone and it rang through. I answered and noticed that the side panel hid automatically.

The quality was ok, not the greatest, I’ve seen much better.  Of course, the equipment that I was using was designed specifically for the task.  But overall, it worked like it stated.  I did notice about a half a second lag however, disconcerting when I’m talking to myself (no I didn’t answer), but when you’re talking to someone over a distance, it most likely wouldn’t be noticeable.

The preferences pane is pretty simple.  Turn FaceTime on or off, select the account and add another e-mail if you choose.

While you’re in FaceTime, you can switch applications on the phone and it would put the call into ‘pause’ mode or hold.

You can also choose to switch cameras to the backside camera which could come in handy.  I could definitely see it’s uses.  You can also turn the camera to landscape mode.  Again, I could see how it could come in handy.


Overall, I’d say it’s a nice little application.  As long as you’re on wifi, it would be a great app to use instead of Skype between Mac and Windows, or the Mac Chat if you both have a Mac.

Now, for the part that I mentioned earlier about being full of holes.

Basically, it’s more of a user issue instead of a software issue, but they could have made it a little easier to secure it.

When you’re logged into FaceTime, your account information can be seen in clear text.  That means password, user id, e-mail address, everything.  It also retains your password and account information so you don’t have to enter it every time you want to use it.

Now, here’s my take on this ‘security hole’.  Yes, they should not have made the password cleartext.  But, let’s think about this for a second.  If you leave your box open, without a password, no screen saver, etc, you deserver what you get.  Same as if you left your e-mail program open, or anything else on your computer.  If it’s there, it’s gone.  This is pretty much a save yourself thing.  Don’t leave your computer unattended.  If you do, you’re screwed.

Remember, if there’s physical access to the box, they own it and all the information on it.

Basically, that’s all there is.  Simple program, simple security fix.



~ by Normanomicon on October 21, 2010.

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