07/11/2012 15:01 | By Paul Lamkin, Senior editor, MSN Tech

Windows Live Messenger replaced by Skype

Popular platform is being retired as Microsoft urges IM fans to switch

Skype to replace Messenger (© Skype)

Microsoft has announced that Windows Live Messenger will be retired in the first quarter of 2013, to be fully replaced by Skype.

When Skype 6.0 went live for both Windows and Mac at the end of October a feature was included that allowed users to sign in using their Microsoft accounts. It has now been confirmed, following much speculation, that Messenger will migrate into Skype - with Microsoft account contacts now on show when signed into Skype.

Microsoft purchased Skype for a reported $8.5 billion in May 2011 and some will see the migration of the popular instant messaging platform into the Skype platform as an inevitability. Skype users are also able to instant message with their Facebook friends as well, meaning the platform is now a one-stop-shop for all your IM needs.

"Our goal remains to deliver the best communications experience for everyone, everywhere," said Tony Bates, president of the Skype division at Microsoft. "We want to focus our efforts on making things simpler for our users while continuously improving the overall experience.

"We will work with you over the next few months to help you transition and offer information and help along the way."

Windows Live Messenger will close globally, with the exception of China where it will run alongside Skype. 

Review: Logitech TV Cam HD for Skype 

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