AOL’s AIM Will Shut Down On December 15
In the 1990s, AOL was almost synonymous with the internet. Millions of Americans got their internet service through AOL. Increased competition from cable companies brought an end to AOL’s dominance, but some of the company’s properties lived on. One of those was AIM or AOL Instant Messanger. However, all things must come to an end AIM’s time is drawing to a close. A tweet from AIM’s twitter account has announced that the service will be shutting down on December 15.
— AIM (@aim) October 6, 2017
Michael Albers, vice president of communications product at Oath, which includes AOL, told USA Today that the way in which people communicate has vastly changed since the service launched. While the closure of AIM is likely sad for a lot of people, the news is understandable. The majority of people use texts, Facebook or other messaging services that AIM simply can’t compete with.
The company’s FAQ says that there is no replacement product in the work, but that they are ” more excited than ever to focus on building the next generation of iconic brands and life-changing products.”
Advancements in technology aside, it is possible this move would have happened even if the messenger service was still popular. When Verizon bought AOL and created the Oath brand, it was clear that the company would be making plenty of changes to the organization. AOL has not done well in recent years so Verizon is likely working to rebuild the brand into something more profitable and cutting legacy brands is a common step in scenarios such as these.
As with Blockbuster Video before it, we’re likely all a bit sad about this news, but we don’t expect it will affect too many people’s daily lives.
Eric is an avid tech junkie, gamer, and comic fan. When he's not working on his PC, you'll find him at your local comic book shop.