The Big Date – April 8th, 2013 – UPDATED, XMPP till Oct, other applications till Mar 2014
As you probably have received via e-mail prior to reading this, Microsoft has finally decided on the date its shutting down Messenger –
March 15, 2013. UPDATE: Actually they’ve decided it’ll be April 8th now to start, completing by April 30th.
Besides including the date, the verbiage of the e-mail has changed slightly from earlier announcements as it now distinctly says the “Messenger service globally”, although again excludes mainland China.
However, the small FAQ at the end of the mail distinctly says “Messenger users on desktops” and that mobile Messenger versions will continue to work for “a while”.
So although we now know the date,
the exact details are still a mystery.
UPDATE: On http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/live/default.aspx some details have finally been posted:
We recently announced that we’ll begin to encourage Messenger users to start using Skype. As a result, the Messenger developer program will end. Existing implementations that use Extensible Messaging and Presence Protocol (XMPP) will continue to work until October 2013. Existing implementations that use MSP will continue to work until March 2014. For support for existing XMPP implementations, please visit our Forums page.
What’s probably most important here is that existing Messenger software (Pidgin, Adium, Bitlbee, et al) will continue to work until March 2014. With that known, it certainly should be possible to modify the desktop clients to work until that date.