AOL to end 2006 with more users than 2005

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Time Warner Inc.’s AOL Internet division is expected to end 2006 with more users than 2005, after it decided to offer most of its services for free, according to an internal memorandum.

It’s the first time in four years the company, which restructured its operations this summer to boost usage of its free site in a bid to improve online advertising sales, will have ended a year on an upswing in users.

“As we reach the end of the year we have ever more evidence that those efforts are working,” AOL Chief Executive Randy Falco wrote in a note to employees, seen by Reuters.

AOL ended 2005 with 19.5 million paid subscribers, down from a high of about 26.5 million paying subscribers in 2002.

Source: Reuters

Xbox Gets a Longer Warranty

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Microsoft Corp. is extending its warranty on the Xbox 360 video game console to one year from the previous limit of 90 days. The change announced Friday applies to future and present owners.

The one-year warranty matches what Sony Corp. and Nintendo Co., already offer on their latest video game consoles, the PlayStation 3 and the Wii.

Microsoft said it extended the deal to make its U.S. and Canadian warranty consistent with what it offered in many other countries. Customers who already have paid repair bills on Xbox consoles that they’ve owned for less than one year will automatically get refunds, Microsoft said in a statement.

Source: AP

Google Takes Blogger Out Of Beta

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google has taken its Blogger service out of beta and has added features for customizing layouts, organizing postings, and making blogs private.

Google launched the Blogger upgrade in beta in August, making it available to only a limited number of subscribers. In launching the final version, Google has dropped the separate login for Blogger and is letting anyone start a blog by signing into his or her Google account.

The new features provide more flexibility in layout by enabling drag and drop positioning of most elements on the page. More options are given for colors, fonts, headers, and the sidebar. Google also has eliminated the need to know about HTML or cascading style sheets.

Source: InformationWeek

Vista Issues Bedevil Firefox

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

A total of 34 Firefox bugs related to Windows Vista have been collected in the Mozilla Bugzilla database; 20 of the bugs remain unfixed.

Even though an update was released earlier this week, Mozilla’s Firefox browser remains plagued by 20 bugs when run in Windows Vista.

According to the release notes of Firefox, the edition issued Tuesday, the browser hasn’t yet been given the all-clear for Vista. Among problems still on the list: Firefox cannot be set as the default browser in Vista, and updates may fail if the application is installed to a directory other than the default.

Source: InformationWeek

Google overtakes Yahoo in user visits

Filed under: — Aviran Mordo

Google overtook Yahoo as the second most popular Internet destination for Web surfers worldwide in November while Microsoft held on to the top spot, ComScore reported.

Slightly more than 736 million people around the world traveled the Internet last month, with 475,713 of them visiting Google websites and 475,262 going to Yahoo online properties, according to industry tracker ComScore.

Websites of Redmond, Washington-based software giant Microsoft were visited by 501,720 people, the rating tally revealed.

Hot video-sharing website YouTube placed tenth in the ComScore Media Metrix rankings but showed the largest surge in visitors, with the number catapulting by more than 2,000 percent to 107,944.

Google’s results did not include visits YouTube, which it bought in October.

Source: Yahoo

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