RealTime IT News

AOL Takes Step To Deliver Service Anywhere

America Online Inc. launched AOL Mobile services on AT&T's Digital PocketNet service, giving users wireless access to the service as well as to AOL's other brands.

AOL said it will have top placement in the Portals channel of the Digital PocketNet service premium offer.

Separately, AOL signed an agreement with OmniSky Corp., a provider of branded wireless Internet services for users of handheld mobile devices, that will deliver 'AOL Wireless' content and services on handheld devices via the OmniSky Wireless Internet service.

AOL said it would make an unspecified minority equity investment in OmniSky.

OmniSky's service lets subscribers access and navigate the Internet, send and receive e-mail messages and conduct e-commerce transactions over handheld mobile devices. Financial arrangements were not disclosed for either deal.

"Our goal is to bring consumers the information and services they want, wherever they are,'' said Dennis Patrick, president of AOL Wireless. "We remain focused on bringing AOL's hallmark ease-of-use to wireless interconnectivity."

AOL said the AT&T PocketNet service will now deliver access to AOL features such as e-mail, news, weather and stock quotes, as well as content from some of AOL's other brands, including Digital City, MapQuest and MovieFone.

Since the browser is built into the phone, there is no special software to download.

From the phone's opening screen, AT&T PocketNet Premium customers just need to select AOL from the Portals menu and sign in with their passwords to access the E-Mail, Stocks, Sports, News, Weather, Local and Directions content areas

Subscribers to qualified AT&T Wireless voice plans can pay a flat-rate of just $6.99 per month for unlimited access to their AOL e-mail or $14.99 per month for unlimited access to the entire AOL Mobile suite of wireless services.

The deal with OmniSky is similar, but it also includes a special AOL-customized version of the OmniSky Wireless Internet service that will include easy links to AOL services and content including e-mail and instant messaging through AOL icons on OmniSky's homepage and throughout the OmniSky service.