FireChat first arrived back in April. The app came courtesy of Open Garden and served as a method of chatting off-the-grid. FireChat uses Open Garden's mesh networking technology which means users can chat from device to device without any Internet connection. But while that all sounded good -- there was an initial limitation that may have kept some from joining the off-grid message party.
The initial FireChat release came for Android and iOS, however users were only able to chat with people using the same mobile operating system. Simply put, Android users were able to chat with other Android users, and iOS users were able to chat with other iOS users. Well, in a new update hitting the respective app stores -- FireChat is going cross platform.
Open Garden hasn't offered much in terms of specifics here, but the end result is that Android and iOS users can now chat back and forth -- without the need for an active Internet connection. What Open Garden has said is the app makes use of peer-to-peer WiFi and the Bluetooth personal area network. But again, the end result is that users can now chat across platforms -- which seems to make this quite a bit more appealing.
Otherwise, the FireChat app touts itself as allowing users to "instantly chat with anyone around you." The app features a Nearby mode which will search up to 200 feet of your location, and allows for 'firechats' which are live and anonymous chat sessions. That said, the FireChat app can be found in the Google Play Store.