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AOL Aims to Improve Speed, Ease Traffic

America Online, Inc. today announced the launch of its new "TeraPOP" traffic exchange point at its facilities in Virginia in an effort to increase access speeds for its members and reduce network congestion.

The online service said the TeraPOP is designed to provide customers with direct access to other major Internet networks in an effort to remove the need to travel through multiple exchange points when accessing many locations on the Net.

The TeraPOP--which AOL said can move over 4,000 Megabits of information to and from the Net each second--employs several OC12 connections that are capable of moving 622 Megabits per second.

AOL said the exchange point also uses various smaller bandwidth connections to connect to the backbones of multiple carriers.

TeraPOP peering partners include Internet providers AboveNet Communications, Comstor Network Services, Concentric Network, Conxion, Exodus Communications Inc., Geonet, GTE Internetworking, PSINet, ServInt Internet Services, and WINSTAR Communications.

AOL, which said its subscribers are now generating 1 billion Web hits on a daily basis, expects to add more participants in the TeraPOP to improve service and performance on the respective participants' networks.

Matt Korn, AOL's Senior Vice President of Network Operations, said in a statement that the move is part of continued effort by the company to not only improve access speeds for customers, but to streamline the flow of information in cyberspace.

In an earnings report earlier this week, AOL said it added a record 655,000 new subscribers for its fiscal fourth-quarter, boosting its membership to around 12.5 million users worldwide.



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