AOL Instant Messenger signs off for good

AOL goodbye
Image: AOL



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18 December 2017 | 0

It’s the end of an era that realistically ended a decade ago. On Friday, AOL shut down AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) permanently. Plans for its death were first announced in October.

The rise of social networks like Facebook and Whatsapp were the final nail in AIM’s coffin. AOL company acknowledged that the times aren’t just a-changing now that we’re in the smartphone era – they’ve already been altered forever. “AIM tapped into new digital technologies and ignited a cultural shift, but the way in which we communicate with each other has profoundly changed,” wrote Michael Albers, VP of communications at Oath (the Verizon brand that owns AOL).

AOL discontinued active AIM development in 2012, and cut off third party apps (like Adium, Trillian, and Pidgin) earlier this year.

AOL Instant Messenger isn’t the only turn of the century vanguard to fall on hard times; Microsoft shut down MSN Messenger in 2014, while Yahoo Messenger closed up shop last year.

An AOL help page says you’ll continue to have access to your e-mail address, but there was no way to save or export your AIM buddy list for posterity. That era is really, truly dead.

If you’re looking for an all-encompassing AIM alternative, this handy Chrome extension lets you access Whatsapp, Facebook Messenger, Skype, Slack, Google Hangouts, Discord, Steam chat and more from a single window.

IDG News Service

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