AOL strikes blow in logo logomachy

Finally Microsoft Corp.'s MSN has some real competition for its place on the Windows desktop in the shape of America Online Inc. (AOL), after PC maker Compaq Computer Corp. announced last week it would feature AOL icons on its desktops.

The desktop space, once a monopoly to MSN and 'friends' of Microsoft, was opened up by Microsoft earlier this month after pressure from the U.S. courts. This now means other providers of web access and messaging services can display their icons on the desktop.

Compaq computers will still feature Microsoft's MSN service but it will be embedded in the Start menu so that people will have to click and drag the cursor to gain access to it.

In the battle for supremacy Microsoft has accused AOL of underhand practices and rumours are circulating that AOL is planning to pay those manufacturers which choose their products US$35 for each new customer gained. "[AOL] is paying computer makers to eliminate consumer choice, forcing people to select the most expensive service in the industry," said Vivek Varma, a spokesperson for Microsoft, in a press statement.

AOL refused to comment on specific details but stressed it had not taken part in any underhand or illegal actions. "Microsoft just can't accept it now has competition," said an AOL spokeswoman.

So while the big boys are left to fight it out, customers should expect more choice and, in the long run, cheaper prices.

"Its all about choice," said AOL, "and we aim to provide that."

Join the newsletter!

Or

Sign up to gain exclusive access to email subscriptions, event invitations, competitions, giveaways, and much more.

Membership is free, and your security and privacy remain protected. View our privacy policy before signing up.

Error: Please check your email address.
Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Wendy Brewer

PC World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Jack Jeffries

MSI GS75

As the Maserati or BMW of laptops, it would fit perfectly in the hands of a professional needing firepower under the hood, sophistication and class on the surface, and gaming prowess (sports mode if you will) in between.

Taylor Carr

MSI PS63

The MSI PS63 is an amazing laptop and I would definitely consider buying one in the future.

Christopher Low

Brother RJ-4230B

This small mobile printer is exactly what I need for invoicing and other jobs such as sending fellow tradesman details or step-by-step instructions that I can easily print off from my phone or the Web.

Aysha Strobbe

Microsoft Office 365/HP Spectre x360

Microsoft Office continues to make a student’s life that little bit easier by offering reliable, easy to use, time-saving functionality, while continuing to develop new features that further enhance what is already a formidable collection of applications

Michael Hargreaves

Microsoft Office 365/Dell XPS 15 2-in-1

I’d recommend a Dell XPS 15 2-in-1 and the new Windows 10 to anyone who needs to get serious work done (before you kick back on your couch with your favourite Netflix show.)

Maryellen Rose George

Brother PT-P750W

It’s useful for office tasks as well as pragmatic labelling of equipment and storage – just don’t get too excited and label everything in sight!

Featured Content

Product Launch Showcase

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?