Had AOL been able to change its business model to embrace AIM instead of keeping it at arm's length, it might well have been the most popular and profitable IM client in the world.
video calls, you can have face-to-face conversations for when voice or text just isn't enough.
However, AOL was also the first of the mass-market online services to offer internet access and that also fueled its success.
By 1997, over half of American internet users got to the net via an AOL dial-up line.
But it introduced hundreds of millions of users to IM.
As Michael Albers, VP of Communications Product at Oath, AOL's parent company, said, "If you were a 90s kid, chances are there was a time when AIM was a huge part of your life.
In that same year, AOL introduced AIM, but it had never been part of the company's official plans.
However, generations of ERP systems were not designed to handle global networks of sensors and devices.
You may have been flirting with your first girlfriend, but I was using it to talk to sources and editors. The first real IM dates later to 1965 when programmers set up "dot SAVED" on CTSS. As the internet gained traction in technical circles, some Finnish hackers came up with the idea of an operating-system agnostic IM system, Internet Relay Chat (IRC), in 1988.
With this, users could write directly to another user's terminal. It quickly became the most popular IM network for programmers and hackers and it remains so to this day.
That was because, as a free program with a free service, it didn't fit into AOL's subscription business model. By 2012, AOL stopped putting any engineering dollars in AIM and it was only a matter of time until AOL would kill it.
In large part, AIM's fall also corresponded with AOL's collapse.