Setting AOL Free
August 3, 2006 4:56 AM
comment(s) - last by
"You've got mail -- for free"
Late yesterday Time Warner announced that AOL will offer its software, e-mail and just about anything else connected to the portal for free. New members will be able to sign up for the software completely gratis, and former members who have quit within the last two years may sign back up with AOL and retain their old e-mail address and handles.
AOL Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Jonathan Miller added “We’ll now be able to maintain and deepen our relationship with many more members who are likely to migrate to broadband. Providing them with their familiar AOL software and e-mail for free, over any broadband connection, will be critical to our future success. For members who’ve left us over the past two years, we’ve kept your e-mail address. When this effort is fully operational in early September, you’ll be able to come home again – for free."
The exact software that is going free is as follows:
AOL's software portal
AOL Instant Messenger
A local phone number with unlimited incoming calls
AOL social networking packages
During the Q2'06 investor call that
took place yesterday
, AOL representatives also claimed that the company would add several new features in "storage, personalized e-mail domains, video and search, as well as an update of its AOL software." The free incoming calls is actually just AOL's version of voice-over-IP, and several of the packages AOL is offering were already free -- such as the AOL Instant Messenger.
The majority of AOLs income will now come from advertising on the network. AOL claims the company already has more than 100 million unique visitors per month; in June of last year Nielson/NetRatings published that AOL was still the fifth most visited portal on the internet with about 74.4 million unique users per month.
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This is a "hail mary" - or a death throe for AOL...
8/3/2006 9:26:38 AM
TG football is just a month away...
This is a hail mary pass for AOL - but it will more likely be one of its final death throes.
I'm not sad to see it go. Over its history its arrogance was unmatched - even by Microsoft. Instead of using its position to compete, it milked its existing customer base like they would stay stupid and uninformed forever.
Eventually nearly every AOL subscriber realized there was better value and better content out there.
AOL blew it - and nearly sunk a media conglomerate in the process.
AOL deserves its fate and I relish each and every story about its demise.
"You can bet that Sony built a long-term business plan about being successful in Japan and that business plan is crumbling." -- Peter Moore, 24 hours before his Microsoft resignation
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