How did AOL manage after giving away IMs?

Discussion in 'Community Discussion' started by Sdashiki, Feb 14, 2008.

  1. Sdashiki macrumors 68040


    Aug 11, 2005
    Behind the lens
    This is something that should have been asked when it happened over a decade ago...

    But, Ive always wondered how AOL didn't fold like the neutron star of bloated crap it was, when they decided to give away the IM "protocol" for free to anyone.

    Being able to use IMs without an AOL account, that was something new for the masses at the time. The fact you also didn't need an AOL account to create an AIM account, also bothered me. How does that make any sense in business?

    My only idea on how AOL could give away one of its greatest software assets, was because at the time many people only had AOL as a way of using the "internets" at the time. DSL, cable were lacking in speed and availability.

    But this also begs the question, how can they STILL be around with the ubiquitous nature of high-speed internet?
  2. TEG macrumors 604


    Jan 21, 2002
    Langley, Washington
    1) They still sold the information provided by AIM signups and sold ads.

    2) 60% of the US still uses dialup. About 15% still use AOL. AOL currently make most of their money by selling info, web habits, and AOL dial-up.

    3) AOL is transforming into a Free portal like Yahoo! or Google. It is actually free for anyone to use the interface, only dial-up ISP users have to pay.


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