Well I never! From an advert on Hotmail I was linked to a page which proclaims that MSN Messenger (more recently known as Windows Live Messenger) is 10 years old. I would have guessed it was older than that.
I can’t remember precisely when I first used MSN Messenger but I’m fairly sure it was in 1999. I don’t remember it being brand spanking new, though. All my friends were using it and I thought it had been around for a while.
I used to use the Messenger Plus addon to add features that the client neglected to include.
Who knows what developments we will see in online communication over the next decade. There’s lots of hype around videophones and that kind of thing, but the technology is already available and hardly used. I just don’t think it’s as practical.
In my opinion, IM‘s biggest rival is Facebook (among other social networks), which has completely changed the way friends, family and casual acquaintances keep in touch. It seems to have taken a slice out of personal email, and out of IM.