AOL Delivers Next-Generation AIM

America Online's AIM Triton pushes more Web services into the mix, including AOL Radio and free PC-to-PC calling.

America Online Inc. released Monday a new version of its popular Instant Messenger software, which is meant to draw more eyeballs to the companys other online facets.

AIM Triton more prominently features many of AOLs other Web-based facets, such as AOL Radio and free PC-to-PC calling along with a chance to subscribe to TotalTalk, AOLs subscription Internet phone service.

/zimages/2/28571.gifTo read more about TotalTalk, click here.

The new wrinkles fit into AOLs strategy of using its free, ad-supported instant messaging software to make up for plummeting revenues from its subscription services.

/zimages/2/28571.gifTo read more about AIM Triton, click here.

If AIM Triton succeeds in drawing more people to AOLs other Web services, as its designed to do, AOL can then charge companies more money to display their advertisements.

But itll have stiff competition for Internet-related ad revenues, which reached an all-time high of $3.1 billion in September, according to the Interactive Advertising Bureau, a trade organization.

AOLs main rivals are Yahoo Inc. and Microsoft Corp.s MSN Web division, which also have free IM that, like AOLs, are supported by ads. According to Nielsen NetRatings, in September AOL had 51.5 million users, MSN Messenger 27.3 million and Yahoo Messenger 21.9 million.

/zimages/2/28571.gifCheck out eWEEK.coms for more on IM and other collaboration technologies.