When I think of AOL, I cannot help but also think about the “You’ve Got Mail” tone that they made famous. As you take a look back on email, AOL was a pioneer in the field as they were one of the first companies to offer it to the masses, way back in the late 90′s. But outside of that and Instant Messenger, they have been very quiet now for quite some time.
Well, that all has changed recently, with their newly, upgraded email client called Alto. Yes, email has come a long way since AOL last came out with a client, and some would even say it is an already crowded space. When I got into the beta for this, the main thing that I wanted to see was whether or not this could replace the apps I currently use for email. I tried to use it by itself for the last couple of weeks and I came away with some interesting thoughts about it.
Aol practically invented the internet as we know today. From email and IM to social networking, they’ve done it all decades ago in varying sizes and forms. After a high profile merger that went tragically wrong, Aol is no longer the giant it used to be. People have slowly migrated to more friendly and sophisticated tools from Yahoo, MSN and of late, Google.
With a sudden realization that a reboot is critical to survival, Aol has undergone a rebranding under a new leadership. Several of its products have either embraced a new identity or are in the process of getting one. One such property is Aol mail. After the jump, we’ll take a look at their email reboot, appropriately named Project Phoenix.