AOL shutting down its Instant Messenger service after 20 years as rivals eclipse IM

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 07 October, 2017, 1:09am
UPDATED : Saturday, 07 October, 2017, 1:09am

AOL has announced that it is discontinuing its pioneering Instant Messenger chat platform after 20 years of service.

An article on AOL’s website posted on Friday says AOL Instant Messenger will be discontinued on December 15. AOL says it’s shutting down the programme because its focus is “on building the next generation of iconic brands and life-changing products.”

Users can still use the programme until December 15. After that date, users won’t be able to sign in.

AOL Instant Messenger was wildly popular in the late 1990s and early 2000s and claimed more than 100 million registered users in 2001. Its popularity as a communication tool waned amid the rise of text messaging, Google Chat and social networking sites.