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SCOTT JAGOW: I know one company that will have fewer jobs. AOL says it’s cutting a quarter of its workforce and with its new business model, AOL will depend on advertising instead of subscriptions. With all these changes, Jeff Tyler looks at where the company might be headed.
JEFF TYLER: Training-wheels for the Internet. That’s one description of the old AOL, but what about going forward?
DAVID CARD:“Basically, AOL is trying to re-invent itself as Yahoo!”
That’s Jupiter Research analyst David Card. He says AOL creates good programming, but most consumers wouldn’t know it.
Folks using MoviePhone or MapQuest may not even realize that they’ve entered AOL territory.
CARD: “They snuck you in the side door. The difference is, when they were the world’s leading access company, they got you in the front door, because every time you logged on, they were very able to guide you and steer you to the content and services they were putting up in front of you. So, they don’t have that position without the access business.”
To compensate, company suits have banked on raising the profile of AOL innovations. Like its new search-engine for movies.
Similar attractions aim to reconnect the brand with Web surfers who have outgrown training wheels.
I’m Jeff Tyler for Marketplace.