On December 15th, AOL’s iconic service, Instant Messenger, will shut down and will not exist any longer.
AIM opened its doors in 1997, and flew open new opportunities for the public in Internet communication. This was pre-smartphone apps and the market was in its infancy.
20 years have gone by, and now, the landscape changed dramatically. The ‘ship’ sailed on without AIM into the smart phone market, mostly due to AOL not being focused on the “mobile device” market and not defending itself from the likes of Google, Apple, Microsoft, and other phone carriers.
Last Message from AOL AIM:
“If you were a 90’s kid, chances are there was a point in time when AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) was a huge part of your life. You likely remember the CD, your first screen name, your carefully curated away messages, and how you organized your buddy lists. Right now you might be reminiscing about how you had to compete for time on the home computer in order to chat with friends outside of school. You might also remember how characters throughout pop culture from “You’ve Got Mail” to “Sex and the City” used AIM to help navigate their relationships. In the late 1990’s, the world had never seen anything like it. And it captivated all of us.”
“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.”