AOL on Friday announced that it would discontinue its iconic Instant Messenger (AIM) service before 2017 ends.
“All good things come to an end,” the program’s official Twitter account posted. “On Dec 15, we’ll bid farewell to AIM. Thank you to all our users! #AIMemories”
The tweet included an animated video of AIM’s signature running yellow man wearing a party hat as balloons drifted away.
“AIM is signing off for the last time,” an AIM message said in the clip. “Thanks to our buddies for making chat history with us!”
Some Twitter users on Friday shared nostalgic memories about AIM, which is ending 20 years after its debut.
I remember using AOL Instant Messenger, it was my first internet experience. Its going away December 15. Goodbye https://t.co/oj1mTQ1Yhe— Robert & Javier (@Bits4youPodcast) October 6, 2017
AOL Instant Messenger: the first time I experienced the internet as magic. ✨💫 RIP https://t.co/R7ElZdWDca— Kanyi Maqubela (@km) October 6, 2017
I think I just died a little inside. RIP to AOL instant messenger. I'll always remember you. pic.twitter.com/1kG8AnynUH— The Spoopy W (@sophiedoubleyou) October 6, 2017
The vice president of communications product at Oath, AOL’s parent company, released a statement explaining the internet service provider’s decision.
“AIM tapped into new digital technologies and ignited a culture shift, but the way in which we communicate with each other has profoundly changed,” Michael Albers said.
“As a result we’ve made the decision that we will be discontinuing AIM effective December 15, 2017,” he continued.
“We are more excited that ever to continue building the next generation of iconic brands and life-changing products for users around the world.”
Engadget reported in March that AOL had begun shutting down third-party apps from accessing AIM.
TechCrunch on Friday reported that AIM’s official MacOS, Windows, iOS and Android apps are also winding down.
AIM launched as a standalone app built into the AOL desktop in 1997 but struggled to make the transition to mobile technologies in recent years.
The formerly popular program has since been largely replaced by other outlets like text messaging, Facebook and Google’s GChat feature.