Microsoft is revealing today that it plans to kill off Google and Facebook chat from its Outlook.com email service "within the next couple of weeks." In an email to Outlook.com customers, Microsoft says it’s removing Google Talk integration "due to Google’s decision to discontinue the chat protocol used by the Google Talk platform." Microsoft will also be discontinuing support for Facebook chat in Outlook.com, but the company has not revealed why it’s killing off the social network’s chat integration.
Facebook and Google services for Outlook.com also integrate with the people feature of the webmail service and keep contacts up to date, and Microsoft says this feature will be unaffected by the decision to discontinue the chat options. Microsoft’s Google Talk support in Outlook.com was a highly requested feature shortly before the software maker introduced it in May 2013. Microsoft is now pushing customers to use Skype in Outlook.com, in a move that feels similar to the retirement of the Windows Live Messenger service back in late 2012. Both Google and Facebook services will disappear from Outlook.com in the coming weeks.