Verizon announced today that the company is buying AOL for $4.4 billion. You might be like, "What, AOL is worth $4.4 billion? AOL still exists?" But yes, my friend, it is and it does.
AOL, which we all remember as that clunky but friendly dial-up service, has become a media company—today, they own the Huffington Post, TechCrunch, and Engadget. In that proces, they also invested heavily in technology that automates the sale of online advertising.
And here's why Verizon would want to drop $4.4 billion, or $50 a share, on AOL: Verizon leads the way in mobile and mobile video, and with AOL's technology, it can capture more money from online ads than subscriptions.
Make sense? For now, let's all bow our heads and remember the great things AOL gave us in its Web 2.0 version: the dial-up sound, AOL Instant Messenger, away messages, fights with your parents about who could use the phone, your first email address, the sweet sounds of "You've got mail!", the Tom Hanks movie You've Got Mail, and your first experience with the chatroom acronym LOL.
It's not #tbt yet, but let's all watch the video above to be transported back to that time. You're welcome.