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Hipchat Atlassian logo.png
Developer(s) Atlassian Inc.
Operating system Mac, Linux, Windows, Android, iOS + Web-based application)
Type Hosted chat and instant messaging for teams and enterprises
License Proprietary
Website www.hipchat.com

HipChat is a Web service for internal/private chat and instant messaging. As well as one-on-one and group/topic chat, it also features cloud-based file storage, video calling, searchable message history and inline image viewing. HipChat is available to download onto computers running Windows, Mac or Linux, as well as Android and iOS smartphones and tablets.[1][2] HipChat is currently based on a freemium model, as much of the service is free with some additional features requiring organizations to pay $2 per user per month.[3]

Having launched in January 2010, HipChat was founded by Chris Rivers, Garret Heaton and Pete Curley, the trio behind HipCal and Plaxo Pulse.[4][1] HipChat was later acquired by Atlassian in March 2012.[5]

HipChat has surpassed the billion message mark and has entered a cycle of exponential growth, as the number of messages has doubled every few months. As of January 2014, it was estimated that the service handles 60 messages per second and boasts 1.2 billion messages stored and half a terabyte of searchable data. HipChat is mainly written in PHP and Python using the Twisted framework, but features an extensive platform that utilizes numerous third-party services.[6][7]


HipChat was started by Chris Rivers, Garret Heaton and Pete Curley, who studied together at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute (RPI). They launched the first beta on December 13, 2009.[8][9] HipChat was made available to the public starting January 25, 2010.[10]

On March 22, 2010, HipChat launched a web chat beta which allowed users to chat via the browser in addition to the existing Windows, Mac and Linux client.[11] HipChat's web client came out of beta and SMS chat support was added on April 16, 2010.[12] On May 12, 2010, HipChat unveiled its official API.[13]

On July 19, 2010, the team moved out of their dining room and into a dedicated office in Sunnyvale, CA.[14] Co-founder Pete Curley announced that HipChat had secured $100,000 in funding on August 10, 2010.[15][16] They had previously relied primarily on word-of-mouth, so this round of seed funding allowed them to kick-start an advertisement campaign, in addition to covering operational costs.[17]

HipChat launched their iOS app on March 4, 2011 and their Android app on June 2, 2011.[18][19]

On March 7, 2012, Atlassian announced that it had bought HipChat and that the HipChat team would be joining them in their San Francisco office.[20][21]


The primary features of HipChat are chat rooms, one-on-one messaging, searchable chat history, image sharing, 5 GB of file storage, and SMS messaging for one-on-one conversations. A plus version ($2 per user/month) adds video calling, screen sharing, unlimited file storage, history retention controls, and a virtual machine version allows HipChat to run within corporate firewalls.[3][22] HipChat also features a guest access mode that allows users outside of your organization to join your group chat via a shareable URL, inline GIF playback, and custom emoticons.[23][24][25] The product is available as a mobile client, a web client and a downloadable native application.[26]

In addition to integration with Atlassian's other products, HipChat integrates with popular services such as GitHub, MailChimp and Heroku.[20] To allow for more third-party integrations to be added, HipChat features a REST API and numerous language specific implementations.[27] As of 2016, HipChat can be integrated with over 100 other tools.[28]


As of May 27, 2014, HipChat can provide administrators 1-to-1 chat histories if the customer's company policies permit viewing of employee communications.[29] There is no way for an individual or organization to opt out of this data collection/exposure.[30]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ a b Kincaid, Jason (2009-12-14). "HipChat Is Yammer For The Masses". Techcrunch. Retrieved 2010-04-23. 
  2. ^ Mackie, Simon (2010-04-15). "HipChat: A Private IM Network for Your Team". Gigaom. Retrieved 2010-04-23. 
  3. ^ a b Curley, Pete (2014-05-27). "HipChat is now free for unlimited users". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-10-28. 
  4. ^ Kincaid, Jason (2010-01-25). "HipChat Takes On Campfire And Yammer As It Launches To The Public". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2010-04-23. 
  5. ^ Lee, Michael (2012-04-08). "Atlassian tries before it buys HipChat". ZDNet. Retrieved 2014-10-28. 
  6. ^ Siddique, Zuhaib (2014-01-06). "How HipChat Stores and Indexes Billions of Messages Using ElasticSearch and Redis". High Scalability. Retrieved 2014-01-08. 
  7. ^ Heaton, Garret (2011-02-03). "What's HipChat made of?". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-12. 
  8. ^ "Young Entrepreneurs Launch "Hip" Company, Again". Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Retrieved 2014-10-28. 
  9. ^ Curley, Pete (2009-12-13). "Introducing HipChat – A private chat network for your company, team, or organization". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-10-28. 
  10. ^ Curley, Pete (2010-01-25). "Later, beta. HipChat is open to the public!". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  11. ^ Rivers, Chris (2010-03-22). "Web chat has arrived! Try the beta.". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  12. ^ Curley, Pete (2010-04-16). "New in HipChat – Web chat, SMS, iPhone & Android compatibility". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  13. ^ Heaton, Garret (2010-05-12). "Introducing the HipChat API". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  14. ^ Heaton, Garret (2010-07-19). "Welcome to HipChat HQ!". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  15. ^ Curley, Pete (2010-08-10). "Bootstrapped no longer – Why we're raising (a little) money". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  16. ^ Ha, Anthony (2010-08-10). "HipChat raises funding for better business chatting". VentureBeat. Retrieved 2014-11-11. 
  17. ^ Goldfisher, Alastair (2010-08-23). "HipChat raises funding for instant messaging service". Reuters. Retrieved 2014-11-12. 
  18. ^ Curley, Pete (2011-03-04). "Introducing HipChat for iPhone and iPad". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  19. ^ Rivers, Chris (2011-06-02). "Introducing HipChat for Android". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-09. 
  20. ^ a b Reynolds, Annelise (2012-03-07). "(Press Release) Atlassian Acquires HipChat, Group Chat and Collaboration Service". Atlassian. Retrieved 2014-10-28. 
  21. ^ "We've been acquired by Atlassian!". HipChat. 2012-03-07. Retrieved 2014-10-28. 
  22. ^ Lardinois, Frederic. "Atlassian Launches HipChat Server, Doubles Down On Team Collaboration". techcrunch.com. Retrieved 10 February 2015. 
  23. ^ Park, Jeff (2013-05-02). "Keep Customer Dialogue Open with Guest Access". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-13. 
  24. ^ Park, Jeff (2014-02-14). "How using HipChat helps build our company culture". Atlassian. Retrieved 2014-11-13. 
  25. ^ Biggs, John (2011-10-07). "Hipchat Adds Custom Emoticons… For A Price". TechCrunch. Retrieved 2014-11-13. 
  26. ^ West, Thad (2012-03-07). "HipChat Will Change The Way Your Company Communicates". Isos Technology. Retrieved 2014-10-28. 
  27. ^ "API Documentation". HipChat. Retrieved 2014-11-10. 
  28. ^ "Integrations". HipChat. Retrieved 10 January 2016. 
  29. ^ HipChat TOS update, April 25, 2014
  30. ^ YCombinator discussion

External links[edit]