Yahoo and Microsoft link IM

Microsoft and Yahoo have made good on a promise to make their instant messaging solutions interoperate.

On Thursday the pair will release a limited beta of a new instant messaging service that will let Windows Live Messenger and Yahoo Messenger with Voice to communicate with each other.

Till now, the combined user base of 350 million accounts has been effectively split but as of today, a small minority of those users will be able to test out what it’s like on the other side. To make the transition easy, the beta is being launched globally in 15 localised languages.

Brad Garlinghouse, senior VP of community and Front Doors at Yahoo, said: “A new era for staying connected with friends and family is here, and the bridge between Yahoo’s and Microsoft’s IM communities is bringing people around the world closer together.”

The service will allow people to sign into both services using one user ID, and to see the status of connections of friends from both networks.

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