Microsoft Messenger for Mac 8 beta adds A/V chats

Microsoft's Mac Business Unit just released a beta version of the upcoming Messenger for Mac 8 and it heralds the arrival of the long-awaited audio/video conferencing feature. The new functionality has been in the works for a while, first teased by Microsoft in December 2008.

Given the popularity of Live Messenger on Windows, the lack of that feature has often been an issue for Windows users switching to the Mac. But Messenger for Mac 8 beta finally brings parity between the Mac and Windows versions of Microsoft’s messenger client, even enabling Mac users to hold audio-video conferences with Windows users using the latest Windows Live Messenger 2009.

The beta version is a free download from the Office for Mac website and the final version will be released alongside Office for Mac 2011 in the later half of this year.

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