Users of MSN Messenger will have to say goodbye to this once popular instant messaging software soon as Microsoft will finally shut it down. MSN Messenger will bid its users goodbye on October 31. Although Microsoft had already encouraged its users to shift over to Skype as early as April 2013, they continued to offer the service in China. Starting on November 1, however, Chinese MSN users will have to use Skype instead.
MSN Messenger was first launched in 1999 and it soon became popular as AOL’s AIM’s rival. Microsoft engineers manipulated the chat protocol of AOL that allowed MSN Messenger to log into AIM, which leads to AOL’s incessant blocking of Microsoft. These two companies have battled over chat popularity for years and as MSN grew more popular, additional features were added. Some of its popular features include games to play with friends, custom emoticons, and a nudge feature that shakes your friend’s chat window.
In 2005, Microsoft changed the name MSN Messenger into Windows Live Messenger and it had over 330 million of active users every month, that’s as of 2009. Microsoft entered a partnership with TOM Group, a Chinese media company that kept MSN Messenger in service in China. However, this partnership saw an end last year.
Before today’s generation that saw the rise of smartphones and tablets and messaging apps like BBM, Viber, and WhatsApp, many people had used MSN Messenger as a way to communicate with friends. MSN Messenger was very popular before social media such as Instagram, Twitter, and Facebook. It was around the time when you need to instruct everyone at home not to use the landline just so you can chat with your friends at peace without being interrupted.
15 years later, it is now time to bid farewell to MSN Messenger. Don’t worry, though, because Microsoft is making sure that users will be left in good hands by steering them towards Skype’s direction. As an incentive for joining Skype, they’re even offering a $2 credit for every user who will make the switch, all for free.
For everyone who’ll miss this service now that it’s about to say goodbye forever, no matter how annoying it was when someone suddenly rang your landline while you were using MSN, here are some of MSN Messenger’s popular features which will make you feel nostalgic.
This feature allows you to virtually nudge your friends when they are taking too long to reply. There was no excuse for you to be “seen-zoned” at the time as you can easily get your friend’s attention by making his chat window shake.
Microsoft added Minesweeper and tic-tac-toe games to take your chat to a whole new level. When you’re getting bored from chatting with a friend, you can turn to either of these games to add more fun to the chat.
Call and Video Features
What started as a basic text communication, Microsoft also added a call feature to MSN Messenger and soon after, a video calling feature.