Orange and Microsoft have joined together to offer Instant Messaging (IM) connectivity between computers and mobile phones, claiming it’s a first.
The service will bring together Orange’s 135m customers with the 240m Microsoft IM users letting them seamlessly IM each other while on different platforms.
It’s not public ready yet, so the service will be starting in France in December this year (and why not … Orange is after all France Telecom in disguise). The UK and Spain will follow “in 2007.”
Hell bent on convergification Didier Lombard, Chairman and CEO, France Telecom gushed, “The launch of this new offering reflects once again the success of Orange’s convergence strategy. Our ambition is to offer simple convergent services, bringing our customers into the world of always-on connectivity.”
We’re a little puzzled by their uniqueness claim, “Orange and Microsoft today announced their first convergent Instant Messaging offering for PCs and mobile.” Given IM clients have been running on mobile phones for a while, how is this the first time?