AOL Communicator Not a Browser?

BetaNews has more about AOL's Gecko based suite called AOL Communicator: New 'Communicator' Threatens Netscape's Future. The article touches on the standard "gloom and doom" in store for Netscape, mentioning that Communicator was developed independent of Netscape and that "shifting focus away from the Web browser has been a long expected transition for Netscape". And it looks like AOL Communicator might not be a web browser at all:

Instead of Web browsing, the focus of Communicator is to provide AOL users a unified e-mail and instant messaging experience, the company says. AOL Communicator Mail supports AOL, POP and IMAP e-mail accounts integrated into a single client. Automatic spam filtering has been added to weed out junk mail, an essential feature offered by rival service MSN.

If AOL is developing Communicator independant of Netscape (and therefore Mozilla) then it won't feature any of the recent enhancements to Mail such as Bayesian spam classification and message views.

The article also mentions that "AOL has made no decisions on how to market the product". I don't see why AOL's standard marketing plan of blanketing suburban neighborhoods with "free discs" won't work.

Update: ExtremeTech has screenshots, and maybe they are using Mozilla Mail code since it does look very much like it.

» posted by pinder on November 27, 2002 at 12:17 PM

Comments

They even mention in the article that it includes something smililar; "AOL Communicator claims to have a sophisticated Spam filtering system that learns what you consider Spam. Inside the Spam mail folder, you can also remove the Spam mark from improperly tagged messages, which also helps it to refine the rules."
Sounds like the current Implementation of Bayesian spam classification in Moz/Mail in today! Hmmm!!

# posted by Jed

You can download it here.
http://www.tech-critic.com/comments.php?id=802&catid=2

# posted by visitor

Ive been asking for this for some time now: A native looking skin with the modern-skin icons.

# posted by ike

According to wget, the content-type the server returns is:

text/plain, so Mozilla tries to display this.

Had to break out IE :-(

# posted by Steve

Are those screenshots anywhere else? Because I think ExtremeTech is having a few ASP issues. Neither Phoenix nor M$I€ can display the page you linked to correctly.

# posted by Minh Nguyễn

FYI, I tried it and the engine for HTML messages is gecko (I sent to myself an HTML message with -moz specific CSS).

# posted by pascal

New screen shots available of the latest build:

http://www.shaggyville.com/aolcommunicator/

# posted by Matt Johnson

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