Interoperability: Yahoo Instant Messenger and Microsoft Messenger Will Be Able to Talk to One Another

When Google Talk launched Danny wrote, “This is also a good point to note that Search Engine Watch has no intention of suddenly diving into instant messaging coverage…IM isn’t search, so it’s not where we’ll spend our time in depth.”

However, I just wanted to put up a quick note pointing out that in the “war” between the big players, it’s worth mentioning that Kevin Delaney has just posted a Wall St Journal story (reg. req) saying that Yahoo Instant Messenger and MSN Messenger will announce (tomorrow) that their IM systems will soon be able to talk to one another.

In a competitive realignment of the heated Internet industry, Microsoft Corp. and Yahoo Inc. are expected to announce Wednesday that consumers using their free communications services — including instant messaging and computer-to-computer voice calling — will be able to communicate directly with each other for the first time, say people familiar with the matter. The expected linkup of Microsoft’s and Yahoo’s communications services would immediately challenge the leading instant-messaging market share of Time Warner Inc.’s America Online unit. AOL has a 56% market share world-wide, according to research firm Radicati Group Inc. It has long resisted letting users of other instant-messaging services connect with its own. A combined Yahoo and Microsoft could command 44% of the global instant-messaging market, according to Radicati.

Both YIM and Microsoft Messenger offer search options direct from the client.

What happens if some sort of hook-up between AOL and MSN goes through? Would IM be a part of it?

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