RealTime IT News

AOL Cuts Developer Jobs

America Online has cut 450 job in California, reducing costs in the face of an eroding dial-up base. Approximately 375 of the pink-slips went to software developers at AOL's Mountain View, Calif., campus, a property it inherited after buying Netscape Communications four years ago.

The layoffs represent about two percent of AOL's workforce. About 100 of the affected workers were offered jobs in the Internet service provider's Dulles, Va., headquarters or White Plains, N.Y., office, AOL spokesman Jim Whitney told internetnews.com. It's too soon, he said, to say how many will choose to relocate.

The programmers did not work on the Netscape network and portal site, but rather produced tools for recent upgrades of the AOL service, Whitney said.

As part of the move, AOL, the online arm of Time Warner , will consolidate its San Francisco and San Diego development offices to Mountain View and Irvine, respectively.

The company did not say how much it expects to save by the moves. AOL is losing hundreds of thousands of subscribers every quarter as customers defect to less expensive rivals or upgrade to broadband service from telecoms or cable companies.

To combat the trend, AOL is rolling out a $9.95 version of its dial-up service and is also making some headway with signing customers for its own broadband service.

In other AOL news, the company's international chief, Michael Lynton, plans to resign to become CEO of Sony Pictures, according to the Los Angeles Times. Before joining AOL, Lynton was an executive in Walt Disney's film division.

AOL's Whitney declined comment on the report. A Sony spokesperson could not be reached for comment.