Showing posts from January, 2021

Thinking about Instant Messaging and WhatsApp

I have been thinking a lot about instant messaging. IM today is something that has evolved from all kinds of “chat” applications over decades. The Internet had Internet Relay Chat (IRC) . Proprietary services such as Prestel in the UK had chat systems. It has a long online history including Bulletin Board Systems (BBS) in the 1980s. The idea of Instant Messaging today comes from the competition between three services. America Online Instant Messaging (AIM) , Yahoo Instant Messenger , and Microsoft Instant Messenger (MSN Messenger) . All three slugged it out for top position in IM on the PC.  In the early 2000s a new kid on the block was Skype . Eventually taken over by Microsoft. Microsoft then closed down it’s successful MSN Messenger and replaced it with Skype. Although it seems that this didn’t really add much to Microsoft’s usage figures. MSN Messenger had built a use case that wasn’t really replicated by the Skype feature set.  Mobile threw up some new contenders. Google kept inve