Microsoft today sent an email to all Outlook.com customers that Facebook Messenger and Google Chat integration with the web-based email service is no longer available. The email outlines that in the next couple of weeks that users will no longer be able to have instant message sessions from Outlook.com to these other services. While no specifics are given on why Facebook Messenger integration is going away, Microsoft was quite clear that the reason Google Chat integration is going away is due to a decision by Google to discontinue the chat protocol.
The announcement will come as a disappointment for some although I would advocate using the native apps or web pages for these services anyway on your PC or Tablet. They generally provide a more robust experience than that of the Outlook.com integration (although it wasn’t bad). In the announcement, Microsoft outlines how users can sign up and integrate Skype into Outlook.com and Internet Explorer. In the email they clearly layout instructions on how to do this integration:
Here are the steps to get started:Activate Skype for Outlook.com by clicking on the Messaging icon in your inbox header.
- Click on the Skype icon to join or sign in.
- Link your Outlook.com email with a Skype ID if you already have one, or use your Outlook.com address to create a new one.
- Navigate to the People page, and add existing contacts as Skype contacts, or add new contacts. You’re ready to start chatting.
- To make free Skype to Skype video and voice calls right from your inbox, simply download the plugin.
If you used Facebook Messenger or Google Chat integration in Outlook.com, is this a big deal to you or not? Tweet me up or leave a comment.