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AIM is Putting Up Its Final Away Message
AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) revolutionized the way we communicated on the Internet. After 20 years, AOL's instant messaging service will be shut down on December 15, 2017.
For many, AIM was the first exposure they had to communicating over the web. It was a revolutionary digital technology that popularized AOL, and in many ways, the Internet as a whole. As other Internet browsers began to popularize, AOL separated AIM as a downloadable messaging client so that AOL wouldn't lose this audience.
Eventually, they began to feel the pinch with other instant messaging competition, such as Google Chat (eventually Google Hangouts) and Facebook Messenger. And then there was the smartphone, which introduced improved text messaging, video chat options, and other WiFi-based options that didn't use up data or text messages. (Yes, remember when we had limits to the number of texts we could send?)
AIM attempted to remain relevant when it offered its integrations with other chatting apps, but AOL cut off access from third-party chat clients back in March. MSN shut down its Messenger service in 2014 and Yahoo Messenger was shut down in 2016. AOL started first, but sadly will not be finishing last.
What was your AIM screen name? Share it in the comments below! I'm sure it wasn't as cool as my "NBAskillz319"!