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Microsoft’s 90’s rival AOL has just announced the shuttering of its instant messaging app, AOL Instant Messaging – more popularly known as AIM. The messaging app, which has been active for over 20 years, will be discontinued this December after which users will most likely not be able to log-in or send messages to one another.
In a blog post announcing the closure, Oath’s (A subsidiary of Verizon, the parent company of the AOL brand ) Michael Albers wrote:
AIM tapped into new digital technologies and ignited a cultural shift, but the way in which we communicate with each other has profoundly changed. As a result we’ve made the decision that we will be discontinuing AIM effective December 15, 2017. We are more excited than ever to continue building the next generation of iconic brands and life-changing products for users around the world.
As the firm said, the way we now communicate digitally has changed. Users will no longer rely on IM apps which made their name on the PC like Skype or AIM did for the most part. Instead, in a mobile-first world, is mobile first experiences built by Snapchat, iMessage and WhatsApp among others shape how we now communicate and share information.
All that being said, AIM and MSN messenger were Instant messaging for a generation of 90’s kids, and their passing on is a reminder that technology – like time – marches on.