RealTime IT News

Your Very Own AOL Domain

AOL has picked its horse and the company is now feeding it.

Today it announced AOL My eAddress, a free e-mail service for registered users that allows them to pick their own domain names to use. AOL will own the domain names.

Beginning in September, Web users will be able to set up and register customized e-mail address using the .com or .net domains, according to a statement.

After choosing their domains, users will be able to add 100 additional identities.

The customized e-mail address will also give users access to AOL's instant messenger client and the AOL network.

AOL My eAddress will come with 2GB of storage and will be compatible with open mail clients that use the IMAP protocol, such as Outlook.

"We're trying to offer a range of products that you have to pay for everyplace else [in order to] bring back old AOL users and hopefully convince new people to give it a try," AOL spokesperson Andrew Weinstein told internetnews.com.

Last week, AOL gave up on its high-revenue broadband ISP business and decided to focus on becoming an ad-supported portal.

As of July 21, AOL ranked fourth behind Google, Yahoo, and MSN in search engine market share, according to a Nielsen//NetRatings report.

The metric is a key feature to indicate the popularity of a portal.

But since and even shortly before the ISP announcement, the company has unleashed a number of free offerings in hopes of making their portal at least as popular as the competition.

Announcing an improved AOL Video, 5GB of storage for all comers, AOL AIM Pro, AOL My eAddress, and, soon, AOL Pictures, the company has affected the air of a carnival pitchman these past few weeks.

Now they're just waiting for waiting for users to step right up.