AOL 9.0 launches offering VoIP and unlimited storage

April 2004
New Media Age;4/1/2004, p7
Trade Publication
This article reports that AOL UK has made its first foray into the voice-over-Internet phone (VOIP) sector with the launch of AOL 9.0, an upgrade to its premium service AOL 8.0. The Internet service provider has allegedly opted for a soft launch, following a successful beta trial with 75,000 testers. The functionality has been integrated into its messaging client AOL Communicator and allows users to hold vide conferences on instant messenger (IM) via a Webcam. Members using Windows XP can also exchange live video footage over IM, while others can record 30-second video clips to send to other users. AOL Communicator has also been made interoperable with mobile networks, so that users can send text messages via IM for the reduced cost per text. Unlike many of its rival offerings, AOL 9.0 offers permanent Web space for digital photos. This compares with the launched MSN Premium service, which offers 25 megabits of storage for the primary account holder and caps its secondary accounts at 10 megabits. In a statement issued by Graham Anderson, director of product innovation at AOL, the company does not have a hard storage limit but users are allowed 1,000 messages spread across their new, old and sent electronic mails.


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