AOL Instant Messenger (AIM) officially closed down on Friday, ending a twenty-year run.
According to Fortune, “All personal data associated with AIM will be deleted after December 15, 2017.” However, users “will still be able to use their @aim.com email address to send and receive email.”
The instant messaging service, which launched in May 1997, has since been replaced by more advanced services such as Facebook, Twitter, Skype, Discord, and Google Hangouts.
AOL announced the closure of AIM in October, prompting former users to reminisce over the platform.
In a statement, Michael Albers, vice president of AOL parent company Oath, claimed, “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 screenname, 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,” he continued. “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,” Albers explained. “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.”
According to AOL’s official website, the company will not be releasing a replacement for AIM.