When comparing Wire vs BitlBee, the Slant community recommends Wire for most people. In the question“What are the best instant messaging clients for Linux?” Wire is ranked 3rd while BitlBee is ranked 9th.
Ranked in these QuestionsQuestion Ranking
Pro Libre/open source
Pro End-to-end encryption
Pro Clean, modern interface
Pro Swiss legislation
Registered in Switzerland.
Pro Completely free for private use
Check out their pricing. It cannot be cheaper for secure private communication.
Pro Intuitive user interface
Wire's user interface is quite intuitive to use, still it has everything required for a complete experience. Settings are very clean and allows you to turn on/off some features which might be disturbing for some, like link previews and emoji conversion.
Pro Public servers
BitlBee can be used without installing via community-maintained public servers.
Pro Supports multiple protocols and networks
BitlBee supports: XMPP/Jabber, MSN Messenger, Yahoo! Messenger, AIM, ICQ, and Twitter.
Pro Free and open source
BitlBee is available for free and licensed under GPLv2 with source code available on GitHub.
While the help command is informative and includes examples, settting BitlBee up requires a considerable amount of technical knowledge.