AOL, Kodak in Online Photo Deal

America Online Inc. is counting on members to “Say Cheese!” online following a new alliance formed today with Eastman Kodak Company to deliver an Internet-based photography service.

Based on digital imaging technology developed by Kodak PhotoNet online, AOL said the “You’ve Got Pictures!” service is designed to make online pictures as easy to obtain as prints, and to enable users to organize, store, send, and personalize pictures via the Net.

After dropping a film off at retailers nationwide and checking an
e-pictures box on the order form, AOL members will be able to have pictures delivered to a special “You’ve Got Pictures!” box on their AOL account.

AOL said that over 30,000 retail locations are expected to offer the service to customers for an additional fee. Retailers will develop the film, scan the shots, and then upload the pictures to AOL via Kodak PhotoNet online within 48 hours of drop-off, according to AOL.

The online service will add a “You Have Pictures!” icon to its member Welcome Screen, in addition to a special area that allows users to display, organize, and customize pictures to share with others online via e-mail. Members will also be able to order reprints, enlargements, and merchandise from Kodak retailers.

Future plans call for the development of an area on AOL.COM that will allow general Internet users and AOL members who do not have access to their accounts to use the online picture service.

“‘You’ve Got Pictures!’ will give consumers a powerful new reason to come online. Plus, the link to Kodak’s extensive network of photo retailers extends the AOL brand into retail establishments in a big way for the first time,” said Bob Pittman, president and Chief Operating Officer of America Online.

“More and more, people are looking to AOL to make important parts
of their daily lives–like sharing pictures with family and friends–easier and more convenient. ‘You’ve Got Pictures!’ is a prime example of the exclusive benefits that make AOL so valuable to our members.”

Financial details of today’s agreement were not disclosed, but Kodak and AOL said they plan to share revenues generated by the new venture.

In addition, AOL said it made a minority investment in Eastman Kodak’s PictureVision Inc. subsidiary.

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