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We knew it was coming ever since Microsoft took over Skype, but now it’s official: Starting March 15, Windows Live Messenger (previously MSN Messenger) will be no more. Instead, you’ll find all your Messenger contacts waiting for you on Skype, whether you’re already using it or not. This will take effect everywhere in the world except mainland China, where Messenger will continue to be available.

Starting Tuesday, Microsoft has began informing all its users of the upcoming change in an official email bearing the subject “Important info about your Messenger account”. In this email, you’ll find everything you need to know about Messenger’s retirement, and a download link for the latest version of Skype.

This means you have exactly two months to say goodbye to Messenger and move over to Skype to keep your chats going. In order to migrate your account to Skype, all you have to do is download the latest version and sign in using your Microsoft account. If you already have a Skype account, you’ll get the option to merge the two accounts. If you don’t, you’ll simply find all your old Messenger contacts in Skype.

Skype is available on multiple platforms, including Windows, Mac, Linux, iOS, Android and Windows Phone. If you’re using a multi-protocol IM client to manage all your different users, clients like - Quite Possibly The Multi-Network Instant Messenger Of Your Dreams - Quite Possibly The Multi-Network Instant Messenger Of Your Dreams Read More and Trillian Easily Connect With Friends Using Trillian 5 [Windows & Mac] Easily Connect With Friends Using Trillian 5 [Windows & Mac] We often have some friends who use one service while others use another. The simple answer is to be present on all the services your friends are on so you don't leave anyone out, but... Read More already support Skype right now, and many others will probably add Skype support as soon as Messenger is officially gone.

Are you happy to see Messenger go, or is Microsoft making a mistake? Are you planning to migrate your account to Skype?

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Source: Messenger

  1. Arxadius Stark
    January 16, 2013 at 4:23 pm

    Well this was bound to happen. Surprised it wasn't sooner!

  2. P O
    January 16, 2013 at 3:00 pm

    I honestly think its good cuz i my friends and i haven't chatted on msn messenger in a long time. I think skype has beautiful ios and android apps that let you keep in touch easier with with those abroad.

    and yes skype is blocked is handful of countries. I have traveled quite a bit and many of the countries i've been to have skype and/or even msn issues.

  3. Paul
    January 16, 2013 at 8:51 am

    Skype is such an awful product. The only reason I still have it is because it is the de-facto standard. Most of my contacts are still using it.

    It was fresh funky when it launched back in 2003, but the interface is now clunky and filled with bloat. The IM client is and has always been awful. Nor are messages "instant". Notifications when minimised are so pathetic that they are hardly noticeable. At the same time the feature set of Skype has actually reduced! No more inbound SMS messaging. The address book is awful and doesn't really integrate with anything. I really hoped MS might bring Skype up to date, but apart from adding Facebook integration (Whoopee!) and now MSN messenger integration, they have done nothing. MS please please please do us all a favour and give us a nice, discreet, clean interface, nice pop-up notifications, proper integration with other address books. Is that too much to ask?

  4. Márcio Guerra
    January 16, 2013 at 3:07 am

    Well... I'll merge my contacts... It was a fun ride...

    Thanks for the news!

    Márcio Guerra

  5. Bud
    January 15, 2013 at 7:55 pm

    For those who feel someone should move to China, try QQ. They have multiple versions although their main page is in Chinese and they don't have a decent version in English, trial and patience can slooooooowly allow one to navigate around it ! Only problem is that they provide way tooooo much info. to satisfy the 1.5 billion people living there, I guess..........

  6. Bud
    January 15, 2013 at 7:48 pm

    oooops, I should have said, since the retirement of Bill Gates, but the same seems to be occurring now with Apple, since Jobs passed away!!!

  7. Bud
    January 15, 2013 at 7:47 pm

    Microsoft recently forced people to begin using Outlook Mail, and whomever designed it should've been taken out and shot!!! Trying to login to hotmail now is like trying to jump through lion hoops used at a circus! Since the passing of S. Jobs, my experiences with MS has shown a steady and rapid decline in many phases of their software, security and assorted products, so the demise of Messenger will be a blessing in disguise and more so, since I dumped using Windows some 2-1/2 years ago and went to an Apple iMac. Windows from my point of view is like the old Yugo car from Yugoslavia..........a piece of junk, that Gates managed to rip-off too many consumers!!!

  8. UUUnicorn
    January 15, 2013 at 5:28 am

    Skype these days is pretty bloated--a memory hog.

    I've uninstalled it, but I don't know what would be a better alternative. I use Windows 7 and Xubuntu.

  9. Zidanetribal09
    January 12, 2013 at 5:30 pm

    I wonder if skype will support more personalization in things like emotes and backgrounds like WLM used to. I remember the days when WLM had sketchpad functions and will be sad to see them go.

  10. Donna Jones
    January 11, 2013 at 5:34 pm

    Will I still get notifications from my hotmail account?

  11. Nevermind
    January 11, 2013 at 8:31 am

    I upgraded to Skype 4.0 or 5.x a while back and couldn't regress back to fast enough. The newer versions were overly cluttered (to me as the more stuff on the screen there is, the harder it is for me to use it) and they took away several of the status options that I loved.

    MSN, Yahoo, and one or two other IM programs are being handled by an older version of Trillian. I really didn't like having all my stuff stored off my computer so I haven't even upgraded to Trillian 4.0. Again, I upgraded, saw what was going on and regressed to the older version.

    I keep the accounts separate for different uses and I have some friends that only use one IM or the other. (I have 2 of each IM account EXCEPT Skype.)

    Am I happy that Microsoft bought out my favourite chat program. No. Am I okay with Microsoft merging my MSN and Skype accounts. ABSOLUTELY NOT! I have 2 MSN accounts for different uses and one Skype account. I don't want them all merged together. They're separate for a reason.

    I guess at some point my MSN messenger stuff will just be rendered useless and anything that Microsoft tries to merge into my Skype account will get deleted.

    If they force an upgrade to a newer Skype and force a merge of accounts, I may just have to delete them all and walk away. Besides I really don't like being forced into "upgrades" that really don't seem to improve how a program works for me.

    I'll stick to the versions I'm on until they stop working and then I guess I'm done.

    • Conor
      January 12, 2013 at 4:28 pm

      Then move to Mainland China.

    • Alex B.
      January 12, 2013 at 6:21 pm

      Apparently, you can run two instances of Skype at the same time, which could be a solution.

      (or at least you could at the date of the post; you might want to look into this)

    • Lisa Santika Onggrid
      January 14, 2013 at 5:19 pm

      Where did you get your old version of Trillian? I too, don't want things like that off my computer.

  12. Stanimir Mihov
    January 10, 2013 at 9:52 pm

    I have been using skype since its begin....
    I´m glad MSN is going down

  13. Adam Borries
    January 10, 2013 at 7:11 pm

    Do you know what will happen to the in-browser Messenger at Hotmail? My wife uses that regularly.

    • Yaara Lancet
      January 11, 2013 at 8:31 am

      I'm not even sure what's going to happen to Hotmail, to be honest. I haven't seen any mention of the Web version, they might just re-brand it as Skype chat or something. I guess we'll have to wait and see.

  14. Miriam
    January 10, 2013 at 5:40 pm

    I merged my Messenger and Skype accounts yesterday and it was working just fine. But today, none of my Messenger contacts are showing up. Also had a hard time logging in through windows live. Anybody know what's going on?

  15. AriesWarlock
    January 10, 2013 at 5:03 pm

    Man, this sucks. Good bye, MSN Plus.

    • Keefe Kingston
      January 10, 2013 at 9:59 pm

      But then hello to Skype plus, which atleast has some of the funtions as MSN plus :) So atleast you're not without any of those handy additional features!

    • Keefe Kingston
      January 10, 2013 at 10:01 pm

      I've already merged my accounts over a month ago, and have been using Skype. Can't say i'm happy with the decision, as there are a few things that drive me crazy that Skype does (like automatically switching to new chats opened to you).

      • AriesWarlock
        January 19, 2013 at 11:45 pm

        I didnt know about Skype plus, thanks.

        So, it seems you don't like Skype huh? This does not bode well.

  16. Ron Cook
    January 10, 2013 at 4:45 pm

    If you already have a Skype account, you’ll get the option to merge the two accounts. If you don’t, you’ll simply find all your old Messenger contacts in Skype.

  17. Juan Carlos Espinosa Agudelo
    January 10, 2013 at 4:30 pm

    One of my online friends lives in Oman and even though she wants to, she can't use Skype. In other words, once Messenger gets shut down, no one in Oman will be able to use a chatservice from Microsoft. My friend has already started migrating towards other services, such as AIM and I personally suggested Trillian.

    I personally think this is one of the bad sides of Microsoft. I can understand if they discontinue working on a service, but why eliminate it entirely? Some days ago I got curious about Windows 7 Gadgets, to find out that they took down their gallery of gadgets. Why? "Because we want to focus on the exciting possibilities of the newest version of Windows".

    Other than such business practices, I don't really consider this move bad, just poorly executed.

    • Yaara Lancet
      January 11, 2013 at 8:28 am

      Interesting, why can't Skype be used in Oman? I know they left Messenger working in China for similar reasons. I guess they don't care enough about smaller place like Oman, which is annoying.

      • Juan Carlos Espinosa Agudelo
        January 11, 2013 at 9:07 am

        Well, apparently it's not Microsoft's fault. After a quick google search, I found out that the government of Oman will only allow VoIP services, if they get a license from the Telecommunications Regulatory Authority in Oman.

        Here's the article I read:
        "The TRA has decided to block Skype and all other VoIP services, because it believes that Skype should come here and apply for a licence before it can offer its services in Oman."

        And these sites also have some information on it:

        • David Commini
          January 13, 2013 at 1:47 am

          Kuwait is the same way. When I deployed over there I could use my Skype because I already had it, but my buddy couldn't get the latest version because the Kuwaiti government blocked it.

          Of course when Skype finally moved out of the beta for Linux I just used a proxy to do what I needed... just saying

        • Yaara Lancet
          January 13, 2013 at 6:18 am

          Interesting, thanks for the update!

  18. Scutterman
    January 10, 2013 at 4:16 pm

    Is there any way to link a Skype account to a Windows Live account? It'd be really handy for them to migrate all of my contacts to my actual skype account rather than one they make for me.

    • Yaara Lancet
      January 11, 2013 at 8:26 am

      As I mentioned in the post, if you already have a Skype account, you'll be able to merge your two accounts.

      • Scutterman
        January 11, 2013 at 9:46 am

        The process seems a bit buggy at the moment. I couldn't log into the Skype client with my hotmail address until I had logged into the Skype website with it. There's not even any instructions saying this, I just got told "Something went wrong".

        • Yaara Lancet
          January 13, 2013 at 6:17 am

          Yeah, I've heard of some problems in the mean time. I guess they weren't entirely ready for this after all. I'm sure things will smooth out at the end. Maybe that's why we have two months to do this. :)

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