Yahoo and MSN Messenger Deal

Microsoft, Yahoo Reach IM Deal

As per this news item, Microsoft and Yahoo will announce today about a deal that would allow users of Yahoo and MSN messengers to send messages to each other. What this would mean if true is that from my yahoo account I can directly send instant messages to my friends with MSN accounts and vice versa. Currently I need to have a MSN account to send a message to friends with MSN. Same with Yahoo accounts. This is a wonderful news, since most of my friends use MSN or Yahoo. I can send instant messages from just one messenger running on my laptop.

It is good to see Yahoo and Microsoft are opening up their Messenger services, though just to the other partner. I wish all messenger services would open up and allow to send messages seamlessly. All of them speak of interoperability and opening up but in action they are pretty closed. It is such a pain to maintain different messengers and accounts to be able to talk to all of your friends. See my previous blog item Open-Closed Messenger Services - Hyprocricy at its best, talking about this pain.

"A Yahoo-Microsoft partnership, allowing users of the competing services to exchange messages seamlessly, would give the two companies nearly as many users combined as AOL has in total"

This would certainly be a wish and Yahoo and Microsoft will surely be disappointed if that is what they are trying to achieve. The numbers do not add up, since most of the users that have an account with Yahoo will also have an account with MSN. So they are not two different users, but a single user with two accounts. So 27.3M MSN users + 21.9M Yahoo users will not give the merger 49.2 M users. My optimistic estimate would be at the most around 35M users.

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