America Online and Verizon Wireless Launch AOL Instant Messenger Service

America Online and Verizon Wireless Launch AOL® Instant Messenger™ Service

The Nation's Largest Wireless Carrier and World's Leading Instant Messaging Service Allow Consumers To Be in Touch While on the Go

September 25, 2002



America Online, Inc., the world's leading interactive services company, and Verizon Wireless, the nation's largest wireless service provider, today announced the availability of the AOLR Instant MessengerTM service (AIMR) for Verizon Wireless customers. With this launch, customers can quickly and easily send short messages to everyone on their Buddy ListR without needing to go online via a PC.

With the AIM service, Verizon Wireless customers can:

  • Exchange instant messages with others, regardless of whether they are signed on via a computer, mobile phone or other wireless device;
  • See when their friends, family and colleagues are online via the Buddy List feature and be alerted when their buddies sign on;
  • Use the same AOL or AIM screen name and password as they do on their computers;
  • Send and receive private text messages in real-time;
  • Set privacy preferences, allowing them to block instant messages from certain people and to choose who is able to see when they are signed on;
  • Discreetly communicate in situations where speaking out loud is inappropriate such as in business meetings, theaters or restaurants.

John Stratton, Vice President and Chief Marketing Officer for Verizon Wireless, said, "We have announced a series of products and services this year that allow our customers to stay connected via their wireless phone - as well as stay informed and entertained - while enjoying a mobile lifestyle. The AIM service is a great addition to our line-up. Wireless instant messaging continues to grow in popularity, and we are excited to offer our customers this capability."

Lex Felker, Senior Vice President of AOL Anywhere for America Online, said, "Verizon Wireless is a valued partner in extending our AOL Anywhere strategy, which allows our members to break free from their PC and access AOL's features anywhere and at anytime. For millions of consumers, instant messaging is a vital tool for staying connected and now, with the AIM service for wireless phones, Verizon Wireless customers can stay in greater touch even while they're on the go."

With the launch of the AOL Instant Messenger service, America Online and Verizon Wireless are extending the range of AOL services available for Verizon Wireless customers. In August 2002, the companies announced the availability of convenient wireless access to AOL Mail and other AOL content including the latest news, financial information, driving directions, and local event and entertainment information via the Verizon Wireless Mobile Web service.

Verizon Wireless customers using the AIM service will only be charged for the messages sent and received according to their Verizon Wireless price plan. They can pay as they go for $0.02 per message received and $0.10 per message sent or select from three bundled plans: 100 sent or received messages for $2.99 per month; 200 sent or received messages for $3.99 per month; and 600 sent or received messages for just $7.99 per month. Extra sent messages are $0.10 each and received messages are $0.02 each. Customers need a two-way text-enabled wireless phone and Verizon Wireless digital service. The AIM service does not use airtime minutes and is available in all Verizon Wireless coverage areas. To learn more about the AIM service for Verizon Wireless phones, visit http://www.aim.com/vzw.

About America Online, Inc.

America Online, Inc. is a wholly owned subsidiary of AOL Time Warner, Inc. (NYSE: AOL). Based in Dulles, Virginia, America Online is the world's leader in interactive services, Web brands, Internet technologies and e-commerce services.

About Verizon Wireless

Verizon Wireless is the nation's leading provider of wireless communications. The company has the largest nationwide wireless voice and data network and 30.3 million customers. Headquartered in Bedminster, NJ, Verizon Wireless is a joint venture of Verizon Communications (NYSE:VZ) and Vodafone (NYSE and LSE: VOD). Find more information on the Web at www.verizonwireless.com.

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