Microsoft’s Windows Live Messenger, originally called MSN Messenger, will be switched off in China in October after marking the end of its 15-year-old service.
MSN Messenger came to China in 2005 though faced stiff competition from QQ messenger, designed by Chinese rival firm Tencent.
After Microsoft purchased rival Skype, MSN Messenger launched in 1999 was turned off for most users in 2013. By 2009, Windows Live still had as many as 330 million users though the number reduced later as Skype users rose to almost 300 million by 2012.
According to Chinese newspapers, most Chinese Windows Live users obtained emails from Microsoft informing them of the intended closure. The emails informed users that they would receive free Skype credit when they moved over to the new service.
MSN Messenger started as a simple text chat service in 1999, which later added features such as games, video calls and photo delivery as technology grew though the purchase of Skype in 2012 signified the end for MSN service.
China users who continued to use the old service will be transferred to Skype by October 31, 2014.