Microsoft to overtake AOL

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Christoph Janz

Dec 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/11/97

No, I'm not kidding but it's only a vague thought which just has
ocurred to me.

After the disaster with MSN I wonder if Bill will accept it that the
topic Online Service is finished for Microsoft. Wouldn't it be a great
thing to control the market for Online Services after Operating Systems
and - maybe one day - Web Browsers?

Please comment if this scenario is realistic or not.

- - -
Christoph Janz,
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Patrick Smith

Dec 11, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/11/97

Bill gates is very smart. He would like to own the world but if he were to
take over AOL, the feds might get on his back. It will take intervention be
the US government to stop them from squashing Netscape.

AOL looks great, up 1 3/16 to 86 3/16 on a really bad day.

Patrick Smith

Christoph Janz wrote in message <66pn58$7rb$>...

Rick Monihan

Dec 12, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/12/97

Based on yesterday's news, it looks unlikely that MSFT's vision of the
future of the web will become a reality. Looks like online competition
is here to stay. I seriously doubt that MSN can or would buy out or
take over or even overtake AOL. Remember, AOL is no longer an ISP, but
a media company. And a damn good one, at that. I expect AOL to
continue improving its position as the premiere online stock. They have
the subscribers, the creative, the talent, and the money. Don't need
much else....MSFT just has a great PR machine. Sometimes, that isn't
enough. Most onliners are anti-MSFT (I'm ambivalent), and while a good
number are anti-AOL as well, they feel that way for different reasons
(bad connections, poor service, limited choices...) than the
monopoliphobes (did I just create a word?) who bad mouth MSFT.
Go long on AOL and you'll be glad you did (although I think it's still
a little overpriced). I would wait, it should drop back to the mid


Dec 14, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/14/97

MSN is terrible. I'm going to dump it after the holidays, but frankly I
don't think AOL's current price makes it a good takeover target. Somebody
did a little math recently and found that based on current price, AOL's
members are valued at about $1,200 apiece (that's about 5 years of member
dues). On the other hand, AOL paid about $90 a member for Compuserve
earlier this year.

Even Gates can't toss out 8 billion at a shot for this kind of action,
antitrust issues aside.

The Hedgehog <>

Rick Monihan

Dec 15, 1997, 3:00:00 AM12/15/97

I don't know why you guys are stuck on the value/subscriber.
Subscribers are becoming the least important source of income for AOL.
AOL bought Compuserve for its content, not so much for its subscriber
base (most of which overlapped).
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