instant messaging


Definition of instant messaging

: a means or system for transmitting electronic messages instantly

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Other Words from instant messaging

instant message noun or verb

Examples of instant messaging in a Sentence

Recent Examples on the Web In other ways, though, these groups — particularly those with far-flung members — were perhaps better equipped than the rest of us to confront the challenges of social distance, already Zooming and G-chatting, Slacking and instant messaging. New York Times, 13 Oct. 2021 The instant messaging service acquired by Facebook in 2014 is the primary means of communication throughout much of the world. Jacob Siegal, BGR, 5 Oct. 2021 Running multiple apps on an overloaded PC Take a PC with multiple applications running: email in the background, instant messaging, browsers with multiple tabs, and so on. Mark Hachman, PCWorld, 9 Sep. 2021 The feature adds another layer of privacy and security to your instant messaging experience. Chris Smith, BGR, 10 Sep. 2021 Police say McFarland met a 15-year-old from Arizona through an instant messaging app called Discord and convinced the boy to exchange explicit pictures, starting in November. Jesse Leavenworth,, 3 Sep. 2021 Appointments to shop can be made at the company's website, or by calling or instant messaging the store using the app Signal. Quinci Legardye, Harper's BAZAAR, 6 Aug. 2021 Police arrested Bremerman on March 31 after an investigation prompted by a tip given to the National Center for Missing & Exploited Children by an instant messaging app, Kik, that child pornography was being uploaded, according to arrest records. Washington Post, 6 July 2021 WhatsApp is the world’s largest instant messaging platform with more than 2 billion users worldwide, and India is the app’s largest market, with more than 500 million WhatsApp users. Chris Smith, BGR, 26 May 2021

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'instant messaging.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of instant messaging

1995, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for instant messaging

Time Traveler

The first known use of instant messaging was in 1995

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Dictionary Entries Near instant messaging


instant messaging

instant replay

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Statistics for instant messaging

Last Updated

16 Oct 2021

Cite this Entry

“Instant messaging.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 17 Oct. 2021.

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More Definitions for instant messaging

instant messaging


English Language Learners Definition of instant messaging

: a system for sending messages quickly over the Internet from one computer to another computer

instant messaging

instant mes·​sag·​ing | \ -ˈme-si-jiŋ \

Kids Definition of instant messaging

: a system for sending messages quickly over the Internet from one computer to another


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