IMPORTANT: Microsoft is replacing Windows Live Messenger with Skype. All your contacts will be moved automatically. Take a look at The Complete Guide to Moving from Messenger to Skype for more information, alternatives and tips.
Now that Messenger 8.0 supports video and audio webchats, not many users will see the need to use version 7.
However, if neither of these are particularly important to you then version 7 might still be useful to you. Of course, whichever version you choose, you still have to sign in using your Hotmail or Windows Live account. Once installed, the first thing you'll see is that Microsoft Messenger 7 offers a slightly updated interface to version 6.
Messenger 7 offers Bonjour support, so you can detect and connect with users on the same local network as you. Features like sending files, displaying a picture or emoticons are unchanged. You can change your display name and add a personal message just by clicking on them.
One new feature is that you can give nicknames to your friends. Just click on their display name and start typing. We also liked the search feature, which is really handy to quickly find a contact or email address.
It's obvious that this upgrade is aimed at corporate users as they get the most significant updates though. The highly touted audio and video feature, with which you can have video conferences with your contacts, is only available to them.
The same goes with detailed presence information, as you'll need a version of Office Communications Server 2007 to use it.
Corporate users will love the new features in Messenger for Mac 7, like Bonjour Support, detailed presence information and especially audio and video. General users will find barely anything different from version 6 and should download Microsoft Messenger 8.0.
- Important Messenger for Mac 7.0.3 does not work with Live Communications Server 2005. If your organization uses Live Communications Server 2005, you should use Messenger for Mac Version 6.0.