INTERVIEW-AOL sees high-speed boost with
By Nicole Volpe
NEW YORK, June 21 (Reuters) -
America Online Inc.'s (NYSE:AOL - news) $1.5 billion
investment in satellite TV provider Hughes Electronics Corp.
(NYSE:GMH - news) will give the Internet media giant
national reach to provide satellite-based Internet access,
AOL Chief Executive Steve Case said on
``What this alliance does is gives us a national
footprint for high-speed Internet access,'' Case told
Reuters in a telephone interview. He said the alliance
represents the largest cash investment ever made by
Case said the partnership would allow AOL to offer
high-speed Internet access via Hughes' DirecTV satellite
service to the one-third of U.S. households that will not
be wired for other high-speed options by
Most of these households are in rural
High-speed access over cable and telephone lines is
initially being rolled out in affluent urban areas, making
satellite access a faster way to penetrate under-served
``Even if we had deals with all of the cable providers
and telephone companies -- and we don't -- we would
not have this national reach,'' he said.
said the alliance is part of an overall plan to
diversify AOL's delivery methods, to include service over
cable and phone lines and increase subscribers'
``We're interested in this idea of 'AOL Everywhere,'
extending services across all broadband technologies,'' he
Case described ``a highly-connected society'' in which
AOL services could be delivered through televisions,
household appliances and hand-held devices as well as on
The alliance between AOL and Hughes builds on the
companies' earlier agreement to develop a ``combination''
set-top receiver to make DirecTV/AOL TV available to
consumers next year.
``If you are watching the Super
Bowl, you can then access a sports site, or pull up
your buddy list to start a chat about the game or
access your e-mail during a commercial,'' he
The combination of television and Internet access
also provides electronic commerce opportunities. For
example, a subscriber watching a music video on television
could connect to a Web site and buy the CD containing
the song from the video.
AOL has led a group
of Internet companies that are concerned about being
locked out of such e-commerce opportunities that become
available as Internet access is offered over cable lines.
AOL and the others argue that consumers accessing the
Internet via cable should be able to choose their Internet
service provider, and not be forced to take the service
offered by their cable system operators.
conference call with reporters, Case said AOL's alliance
with Hughes would not undercut AOL's argument to
regulators that cable companies are shutting out Internet
While the battle for access to cable line customers
pits AOL against cable companies, Case said he did not
view AOL as being in a race with cable or telephone
companies to provide faster connections.
see ourselves as up against other providers because
we are looking to work with them,'' he said. ``We
want to offer a tapestry of platforms.''
Hi, I recently - about a week ago, bought aol and
I plan to hold it for awhile. I am also planning on
getting in some other internet holdings while these
stocks are still fairly low compared to their previous
prices. I am wondering ----> CAN ANYONE TEL ME WHERE
TO LOOK TO SEE HOW MANY LARGE BLOCKS (>10,000) OF
A STOCK WHERE BOUGHT THROUGHOUT THE DAY?????? Thank
you!!! I am thinking of getting either DCLK or ADFC or
NETG. Any thoughts. Do you think DCLK will go down a
bit before it goes up anymore???? I would like to get
it on a small dip. I knew I should have got it this
morn. Hindsite is perfect!
Yeah......BMW. Actually, I was hoping that
bigBLKBEAR could give us all some more investment tips for
tomorrow. You know like: "SELL NOwwWWWWWW ITS tANKING". He
sure is one savy investor....<wink, wink>