Kerry Parkins, director of key audience marketing: â€œAdvertisers themselves are trying to get a handle on how to monetize in this space. In general, itâ€™s not a great advertising play.â€ Theyâ€™re working with advertisers to expand presence beyond the standard â€œbuild a profile for the Tom Hanks character in The DaVinci Codeâ€ but are concerned about it will play. â€œYou can create community around (a) product â€¦ but itâ€™s a different advertising model. We really want to let the community grow first and be very vibrant before we introduce a degree of commercialism.â€
John McKinley, president of digital services and CTO: â€œWe have a chance to grow our namespace. We actually had year-over-year growth on our own metric â€¦ about 9.3 percent groth of AIM. We think this is still a movable feast here where we can participate.â€ He added, â€œNobody else is in the market with a product this disruptive.â€
AOL clearly has a broad vision of how to monetize this space.Â It’s pure Voice 2.0. Greg Sterling speculates further, noting that AOL could easily repurpose these two assets to serve small businesses.Â
This announcement is more interesting as a marker for where AOL will go, than as a revolution in the making.Â Three things are missing:
- APIs, so that developers can plug into the AIM Pages platform.
- A strong tie-in between AIM Pages and AIM Phoneline.Â At this point, despite the vision being delivered by AOL, they appear to be disjoint products.
- More functional telephony APIs than AOL has delivered.Â Like Skype, and so many other softphone vendors out there, the basics are still not all there.Â Call transfer, for instance, is absent from every major IM/Talk product on the market.
They deserve applause for the breadth, and depth of their vision, and the early signs that they’re executing on it are very encouraging.