An end of an era is upon us. AOL has announced that their long-time messaging service, AOL Instant Messenger, will be discontinued on December 15, 2017. While the service is still currently active, after December 15, you will no longer be able to access or sign in to AIM services on any platform.

On the AIM help page, AOL said the following in regards to why the product is being discontinued.

We know there are so many loyal fans who have used AIM for decades; and we loved working and building the first chat app of its kind since 1997. Our focus will always be on providing the kind of innovative experiences consumers want. We’re more excited than ever to focus on building the next generation of iconic brands and life-changing products.

So we really don’t know why the product is being discontinued; however, I’m guessing that it has to do with the influx of apps such as WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger that are simply more relevant to today’s users.

It was also pointed out that there is currently not a replacement for AIM; however, you will still be able to use your email address to send and receive email as usual.

While I haven’t used AIM since the late 1990’s, it is sad to see a product that has been around for so long go away. This was the first actual chat app that many of us used, so even though we gave it up more than a decade ago, it’s somewhat bittersweet to see the end come. Farewell AIM.