Microsoft said on Thursday that nearly 18 million people are now using Windows Live Messenger to communicate with friends and family on Facebook Chat.
Microsoft previously revealed in November that Messenger was powering over 1.5 billion minutes of Facebook chat. That number has jumped by 75% to over 2.8 billion minutes. Nearly 18 million people are using Messenger to chat with friends on Facebook. The number of chat sessions between Messenger and Facebook has nearly doubled to about 440 million.
Microsoft says it’s expanding the number of countries where Messenger Facebook chat is available. 75 million customers will now have access worldwide. Microsoft expects the number of users to continue growing thanks to the expansion. “We expect even more progress with the availability of Facebook chat from Messenger to the remaining countries we’re releasing this feature to today,” said Pierro Sierra, Group Program Manager of Windows Live.
It’s not all about Facebook however. Microsoft says it’s working to build partnerships with Messenger to help users connect to a broad array of social networks. The number of connections Messenger customers are making to LinkedIn has more than doubled since November. Meanwhile, MySpace and YouTube connections have grown nearly 50% to remain part of the top services among more than 75 Windows Live services.