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Microsoft announces Skype to replace MSN in March

Microsoft sent an e-mail message advising Messenger (MSN) users to update to Skype utilizing their same account data beforehand.

“You’ll be able to instant message and video chat…just like before, and also discover new ways of staying in touch with Skype on your mobile and tablet,” Microsoft said in the message.

The Redmond, Washington-based technology giant declared in November that it was closing down Messenger in favor of merging users into Skype.

Skype features include video calls and being able to call phones from computers via voice over IP (VOIP), in addition to being capable of connecting with friends via Facebook. A Skype feature on Facebook, a social network in which Microsoft owns a small part of, allows for multi-person conversations and instant one-on-one video calls with friends.

Skype users can make affordable or free phone calls over the Internet using their computers or smartphones. Skype bypasses the standard telephone network by channeling voice and video calls over the Web.

Microsoft bought Skype for $8.5 billion in 2011.

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