The pioneering instant messaging service of the late 1990s, ICQ, is closing its doors

The pioneering instant messaging service of the late 1990s, ICQ, is closing its doors

(Paris) ICQ, the pioneering instant messaging program on computers in the late 1990s, was permanently shut down on Wednesday after nearly 28 years of existence, according to a message posted on the site.


“The service has stopped working,” we can now read on the ICQ website, a short message on a black background and accompanied by a flower with green petals, the famous icon of the service.

The site is now linked to VK Messenger, the messaging service of Russian tech giant VK, which also owns ICQ (“I'm looking for you,” I'm seeking you in French).

The parent company of Russia's leading social network VKontakte bought this leading online messaging company in 2010 from the American Internet portal AOL for $187.5 million.

Created in 1996 by the Israeli company Mirabilis and then bought by AOL in 1998, ICQ introduced a revolutionary concept at the time: instant online conversations with other users on its network.

ICQ, the predecessor to today's popular apps like Facebook Messenger or WhatsApp, had more than 32 million unique visitors a month when it was acquired in 2010.

According to AOL, about 80% of its users are between the ages of 13 and 29 and spend more than five hours a day connected to email.

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About the Author: Octávio Florencio

"Evangelista zumbi. Pensador. Criador ávido. Fanático pela internet premiado. Fanático incurável pela web."

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