Yahoo revealed today that it will no longer support Yahoo Messenger, the company's instant messaging program, after July 17, 2018.
Yahoo Messenger users can use the program like they normally do until July 17, 2018. From July 18, 2018 on users won't be able to access chats and other services related to Yahoo Messenger anymore. In other words: Yahoo Messenger's backend is shut down at that time so that connections are not longer supported.
Yahoo published a small FAQ in which the company tries to answer some of the most pressing questions that Yahoo Messenger users may have.
The company reveals why it decided to kill Yahoo Messenger -- because of changes in how people communicate with each other -- and how users can preserve the chat history before the service is shut down for good.
Yahoo revealed that users of Messenger may request to download their chat history on the following site. The company notes that users may do so for the next six months but that they won't be able to do so after that period.
Users need to sign in on the site and type the Account Key that is sent to them by Yahoo. A download option is provided afterward but the chat history is not downloaded automatically. You need to provide an email address for the file and Yahoo will sent the history to that email address.
The change won't affect any other Yahoo products or the Yahoo ID. Yahoo Messenger applications installed on computer systems or mobile devices will stop working after July 17, 2018. Yahoo recommends that users remove them from their devices as they can't be used anymore after the date.
Yahoo has no direct replacement for Yahoo Messenger users. The company recommends Yahoo Squirrel, a beta invite-only group messaging application. Users may request an invite on the Yahoo Squirrel page.
There has been a bit of restructuring going after after Verizon acquired Yahoo in 2016. Oath, the new parent company of Yahoo and AOL, sold Flickr recently to SmugMug, and shut down AOL Messenger AIM back in 2017.
We speculated about the future of Yahoo's Web Properties back in 2017 and suggested that the new owner of Yahoo could take a hard look at Yahoo owned properties and applications, and sell or retire those that don't fit in the portfolio or are not used by enough users.
There are plenty of alternatives available. We looked at some when Aol shut down its Messenger, and the list of alternatives is fine for Yahoo Messenger users as well.
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