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Motorola, AOL Form Pact to Take Instant Messaging Wireless

Motorola Inc. and America Online Inc. are working together to let 45 million instant messaging users potentially get and receive their messages on the road.

Motorola (MOT) and America Online (AOL) Wednesday announced plans to develop a new version of the AOL Instant Messenger that will be integrated into Motorola's smart wireless devices.

Motorola recently developed a series of mobile products that operate on Wireless Application Protocols to design two-way wireless communication devices. The application advancement makes real time communication on handheld devices possible.

The development means that consumers using one of Motorola's wireless communications devices and AOL's proprietary AIM services can send and receive instant messages anywhere, just like a wireless telephone call.

Janiece Webb, Motorola senior vice president and general manager of personal networks group, said the deal marks an exciting time in wireless Internet access.

"This is an exciting, explosive opportunity, and we're delighted to be working with AOL to provide this unique service to both of our customers," Webb said. "It underlines our commitment to bring the Internet to wireless, and to provide the kinds of communications solutions that will enrich consumers' lives around the world."

Barry Schuler, AOL president of interactive services, said the deal with Motorola is just part of their wireless service action plan.

"A key part of our AOL Anywhere strategy is to bring our most popular services to different devices and platforms, including wireless communications," Schuler said." We are pleased to join with an industry leader like Motorola to work to develop applications to make AIM, one of the easiest, fastest ways to communicate in cyberspace, available for Motorola's wireless communications solutions."

This week, Motorola's smart and connected products are being showcased at Geneva Telecom featuring a prototype wireless AIM application.

AOL and Motorola have targeted early 2000 for delivery, pending agreement by the companies on final terms.