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Microsoft To End Windows Live Messenger Service

Messenger users who want to continue to use Microsoft's instant messaging service have to get the current version of Skype.

Microsoft's Messenger service is coming to an end. In the first quarter of 2013, Messenger will no longer be available as a separate service in all regions except mainland China, the company announced this week.

Microsoft is folding Messenger into its Skype voice-over-IP service, according to an announcement made on Tuesday.

Within Skype, there's currently a Messenger-like user interface available to carry out instant messaging, along with voice calls. To aid the shift, Microsoft is assuring Messenger users that they can get their contacts automatically populated into Skype. Those who already have both Messenger and Skype accounts can merge them via the Skype signup process, available here.

Current Messenger users who want to continue to use Microsoft's instant messaging service have to get the current version of Skype, which requires the use of a "Microsoft account" signup.

Microsoft account is the new name for Microsoft's Windows Live ID. That ID is used for consumer applications such as Microsoft's Hotmail (now Outlook.com), SkyDrive and Messenger services, among others. If a Windows Live ID user had used an e-mail address and password as the basis of their Windows Live ID, then they also "already have a Microsoft account," according to a Microsoft description.

The Microsoft account is more than just a name change for Windows Live ID. A Microsoft account shares information across Microsoft's services. In May, Chris Jones, vice president of the Windows Live Group at Microsoft, explained that with a Microsoft account, "your contact list is shared across Windows Phone, Windows 8, Hotmail, Messenger, and SkyDrive, so when you add a contact in one place, it shows up in the cloud and on all of your other devices and services." Similarly, if a user connects their Facebook, LinkedIn or Twitter accounts with their Microsoft account, then those contacts will show up across Microsoft services.

Microsoft's commercial-grade instant messaging service is available as a pop-up option when users hover their mouse cursors over an e-mail sender's name in the Outlook 2010 e-mail client. Other instant messaging options for businesses include using the Microsoft Office Communicator client in conjunction with Microsoft Office Communications Server 2007. The Lync client can also be used for instant messaging by Microsoft's business customers via Lync Server 2010 or the hosted Lync Online service offered via Office 365. Lync Server 2010 is the successor product to Office Communications Server 2007 R2.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is online news editor, Enterprise Group, at 1105 Media Inc.

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Sat, Apr 27, 2013

realy i feel sad specialy with first time i used skype which is not good service and quality as well as im calling my familyusing hotmail massenger for long

Fri, Feb 15, 2013 Vancouver, WA

Microsoft is forcing me to use a competitor with this stupid move. Oh well, They've been frustrating me for years anyway. Finally sprung for a MAC at home... best move I've ever made.

Mon, Feb 11, 2013

It doesn't matter to microsoft what is its customers' opinion. Skype is not a good product, but it handles money. That's what is important. I will not use Skype after Messenger is off. I am moving top Yahoo Messenger which is great.

Mon, Feb 4, 2013 Andy

Skype is crap if you want to video chat to your mates and theyre not on skype it costs you, and as previously mentioned theres a lot of shit on skype I personally will never or want to use, Im switching to yahoo messenger so just have to get all my friends to switch too. YOU SHOT YOURSELF ON THE FOOT MICROSOFT.

Mon, Jan 14, 2013

Skype only lets you type with black letters. It's full of features I don't want or need. There must be another i.m. service we can switch to. I'll be looking.

Wed, Jan 9, 2013 E

It is bound to happen when they purchased Skype. The service is redundant

Mon, Jan 7, 2013

I don't see much use in skype. I think messenger is much better

Thu, Dec 27, 2012 The Real Me orangeburg, s.c.

i hate microsoft....they kept changing messenger until it was stupid and now they are killing it. Microsoft is a murderer.

Wed, Nov 28, 2012 Andrew

I don't want Skype. If I did I would have installed it years ago.

Mon, Nov 19, 2012

Apparently Microsoft's motto is, if it's not broke, discontinue it.

Sat, Nov 17, 2012

I prefer MSN way over skype, better smiley and no wait to have the other online to send message, and other features, this is really a sad new, i will have to find another messenger...

Thu, Nov 8, 2012

my motto is if it not broke don't fix it leave well enough alone

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