Windows Live Messenger arrives on the iPhone

Windows Live Messenger

Microsoft has released a Windows Live Messenger app for the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, offering much the same features as its desktop-bound equivalent on Apple's mobile platform.

The app allows you to chat to your contacts via instant messaging or contact them directly using a Hotmail webmail account. Social network integration is another strength, with content from the likes of Facebook, MySpace and others able to be viewed or commented on without leaving the Live Messenger window.

Wider integration with social media sharing sites such as YouTube and Flickr is also baked in, letting you instantly see when your contacts have shared a new video or set of photos, for example.

The Windows Live Messenger app also allows photo uploading straight from the iPhone's memory, with tools for adding photos, creating albums, adding captions and sharing all on board.

The app is able to run in the background using minimal resources, popping up with a push notification should someone be trying to get in touch.

"Windows Live Messenger for iPhone and iPod Touch is the best way to connect with the people that matter most and keep up with the things they are doing across the web," Microsoft's description of the app reads.

"Use your iPhone to instant message your friends list, view and comment on your friends' photos and status updates from Windows Live, Facebook, and MySpace, and at a glance, see what your Messenger friends are sharing from Flickr, YouTube, and many other social and photo sharing sites."

The Windows Live Messenger app is compatible with iPhone OS 3.0 and newer (including OS 4), and is a free download from the App Store.