Windows Live Messenger, or MSN as lots of people still call it, is no more. Are you ready for the move to Skype?
This isn’t the first time we’ve mentioned it, so lots of you will know that at the end of 2012, Microsoft announced that it was “retiring” old-age chat client MSN. Even though it’s practically a granddad in software terms, lots of people still swear by it, and are upset at its upcoming demise. Unfortunately, there’s no way around it – on April 8 2013, Microsoft is hitting the “off” switch, encouraging you to make the jump to VoIP heavyweight Skype.
So, what do you need to know? The changeover will begin on April 8 with the English-language version and end at the end of the month. For the moment, however, users in China are unaffected. Microsoft suggests that you start to use Skype as your new messenger client, and has taken steps to make the integration very easy. For instance, all your contacts will automatically move to Skype, and you’ll be able to log in with your Windows Live account, so you won’t have to create a new Skype account.
That said, you don’t have to use Skype unless you want to. In fact, there are lots of alternative messenger clients, and although moving to them won’t be quite as seamless as moving to Skype, some of them are great. We’ve gone through the best in our Alternatives to Windows Live Messenger article.
A word of warning – we know you love MSN, and that some of you will fight tooth and nail to hold on to it. Be careful! With a bit of exploration you can probably find an installer somewhere, even after MSN has been shut down, but the spammers and hackers out there know that and are ready to take advantage with a range of MSN/Skype scams – don’t say we didn’t warn you!
Below, we’ve rounded up our most recent MSN posts, so take a look and get answers to your questions. We’ve also suggested a bunch of Skype articles to help you get the most out of the app if you DO decide to make the jump. Let us know what you think. Is Microsoft making a huge mistake?