Feeds

Microsoft and Yahoo! 'to merge IM chat'

>-:)

Intelligent flash storage arrays

Microsoft and Yahoo! will allow users of their respective IM chat services to communicate with each other without recourse to a third-party client, such as Trillian, according to a report. Neither company would confirm the story to the Wall Street Journal.

Microsoft and Yahoo! hold 44 per cent of the worldwide IM user base between them, with AOL taking the lion's share of 56 per cent, according to Radicati Group. Third parties such as Jabber aren't statistically significant, with Google's Jabber-based chat holding just 0.5 per cent, and apparently irc doesn't count.

The IM service operators have pledged to improve interoperability for the general consumer for many years. However, the efforts have only borne fruit in the enterprise space. AOL has solemnly vowed to improve interoperability twice: once in a promise to the FCC after the Time Warner merger, and again as a result of the 2003 agreement which settled its differences with Microsoft. Nothing came of either pledge.

These days all the major players regard IM clients as a vehicle for voice communication, typically at the expense of adding inter-network interoperability. AOL and Yahoo! both introduced PC-to-PC calling in late 1999 and Microsoft followed suit in MSN Messenger the following year. But the spread of broadband has seen VoIP services like Skype and Vonage gain a strong following, and neither of the established players want to cede the desktop space to new challengers.

While the technical challenge of agreeing protocols is trivial, harmonizing the respective smiley sets could provide a challenge. Wink-dash-bracket. ®

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

More from The Register

next story
Doctor Who's Flatline: Cool monsters, yes, but utterly limp subplots
We know what the Doctor does, stop going on about it already
Facebook, Apple: LADIES! Why not FREEZE your EGGS? It's on the company!
No biological clockwatching when you work in Silicon Valley
'Cowardly, venomous trolls' threatened with TWO-YEAR sentences for menacing posts
UK government: 'Taking a stand against a baying cyber-mob'
Happiness economics is bollocks. Oh, UK.gov just adopted it? Er ...
Opportunity doesn't knock; it costs us instead
Ex-US Navy fighter pilot MIT prof: Drones beat humans - I should know
'Missy' Cummings on UAVs, smartcars and dying from boredom
Sysadmin with EBOLA? Gartner's issued advice to debug your biz
Start hoarding cleaning supplies, analyst firm says, and assume your team will scatter
Zippy one-liners, broken promises: Doctor Who on the Orient Express
Series finally hits stride, but Clara's U-turn is baffling
Don't bother telling people if you lose their data, say Euro bods
You read that right – with the proviso that it's encrypted
prev story

Whitepapers

Forging a new future with identity relationship management
Learn about ForgeRock's next generation IRM platform and how it is designed to empower CEOS's and enterprises to engage with consumers.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Win a year’s supply of chocolate
There is no techie angle to this competition so we're not going to pretend there is, but everyone loves chocolate so who cares.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.