about.me Joins the AOL Squad

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aol.jpgADOTAS – When an industry rep asked me the other day for my thoughts about Facebook Messages, I replied that it solves a nonexistent problem and I don’t want Facebook having that much access. Besides, I added, AOL’s Project Phoenix appears to have similar features and looks nicer.

He shot me a look of disbelief. “AOL?” he asked. “Isn’t that something your grandmother uses for email?”

I don’t think my grandmother used AOL, but she is on Facebook. And no, I haven’t had an AOL email address in 15 years (oh, to be 14 and hanging around chat rooms again), but the previews for Project Phoenix really impressed me. My intrigue only grew as AOL acquired priority inbox enabler Unblab, and now I’m pretty pysched that the company acquired social identity aggregator about.me.

Though it only went public four days ago, about.me had 400,000 signups when it opened up in beta in September. In a press release, AOL says not only will about.me socially enhance its revamped email, but also its wide content base (including Engadget and TechCrunch).

I’ve messed around with about.me a little and find it operates as a nice headquarters for my various social media endeavors. I’m very curious what it will do to boost AOL’s mail product.

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