2.15 Million People Still Pay AOL For Internet Access

Image courtesy of (kenfagerdotcom)



Every so often, we like to check in with AOL, our ’90s onramp to the information superhighway that somehow still exists and has been working to remake itself as a media company. While sites like the Huffington Post and TechCrunch bring hundreds of millions of people to ad-supported stories and videos, AOL still makes tens of millions of dollars from their classic business model of collecting subscription fees for Internet access.

Overall, things look promising at AOL, especially after the company stopped losing hundreds of millions of dollars on local news venture Patch. That’s great for them, but not what we’re interested in. What we want to know is how many people are still paying a monthly bill for AOL dialup.

This quarter, the magic number is 2,156,000 subscribers, or 233,000 fewer than this time last year. AOL takes in an average of $20.83 per customer per month from subscription fees and other money that subscribers pay.

While AOL no longer depends on subscribers for as much of its revenue as it once did, they still make quite a bit of money from their legacy business. While dialup Internet access is still the only way that people in some parts of this country can have any access at all, a few years ago we shared that 75% of people who had kept their AOL accounts didn’t use them to connect to the Internet. They continue to subscribe to keep their e-mail accounts active, and perhaps to use some proprietary content on the AOL service…even if they have a broadband connection.


Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.