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Messenger users will switch to Skype
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Microsoft is to retire its 13-year-old Instant Messenger service and migrate all users to Skype, which the company bought in May 2011.
The company confirmed the move in January, sending an email to its 100+ Messenger users.
"We are retiring the existing Messenger service globally...and bringing the great features of Messenger and Skype together," the email read.
Skype has promised it will guide Windows Live Messenger users to facilitate the rapid transition between the two services. The company encouraged users to "update to Skype", into which the chat service will be merged once Messenger is retired.
Users will be able to log in to Skype using their Microsoft account, previously known as the Windows Live ID, which includes an email address and password. All Messenger contacts will be included on Skype upon sign-in.
Messenger will still be available to users in mainland China, where Skype is operated by a local provider called TOM.
With 40.6 per cent of the install base, Windows Live Messenger is the world's most popular IM service.