AOL Accelerates Consumer Adoption of Personal Media Products with Enhancements to BlueString and Xdrive
New Series of Embedded Applications Enable BlueString Functionality Across the Internet
Adobe Flex and Adobe AIR Implemented to Deliver Web-Enabled Applications on the Desktop
Las Vegas, NV.- AOL today announced major enhancements to its leading personal media products with new features in BlueString (www.bluestring.com), the first free Website that enables users to easily upload, store, consume, manage and share digital media; and the upcoming release of a new beta version of Xdrive (www.xdrive.com), the leading personal hard drive on the Internet allowing consumers to store, access, share and backup their files. Both products will be demonstrated at this week’s Consumer Electronics Show (CES) and are scheduled for general release in the first quarter of 2008.
Beginning today, a series of embedded applications called, “My Memory Gallery,” which allow consumers to access and use BlueString on Facebook® can be found at http://apps.facebook.com/mymemorygallery. They will also be made available in the Facebook Application Directory. Generic versions of these applications will soon be available for inclusion on blogs, other Websites and personal homepages. In addition, an enhanced version of Xdrive featuring a new user interface will be released into beta in early 2008. Both are being built with Adobe® Flex™ and Adobe AIR™, Adobe’s rich Internet application (RIA) technologies (www.adobe.com/go/ria), which combine the reach of the Web with the richness and ease of use of desktop applications into AOL’s Web-based products.
“AOL is advancing personal media products to make them more intuitive, user-friendly and easily integrated with other products, applications and Websites,” said David Liu, Senior Vice President, Social Media, Messaging and Homepages, AOL. “By using innovative technologies such as Adobe Flex and Adobe AIR, we can deliver powerful, application-like Web-based tools that allow users to access media wherever it may be stored (on the PC or on the Web), create shows that truly express the moments of their lives and easily share their personal media privately or publicly via BlueString, Xdrive or another Website of their choice.”
Scheduled to leave beta during the first quarter of 2008, BlueString will include an enhanced user interface based on Adobe Flex and Adobe AIR enabling simple drag-and-drop of photos, videos, and music across online and offline storage, and eliminating the need for consumers to explicitly upload files before they create with or share their digital media. The market-ready version of BlueString will also offer consumers the ability to access personal photos, videos and music from a variety of third-party media sites and popular photo, video and music-sharing sites.
The new Xdrive beta will feature a simplified and easier-to-use design. Also built on Adobe AIR, this version of Xdrive will integrate the consumer’s desktop directly into the online application, giving users the ability to simply drag and drop files directly from the desktop into Xdrive. The updated version of Xdrive will also be fully integrated into AOL Mail, allowing users to send attachments larger than the current 16 MB limit, creating a seamless email experience for people sending files up to 5 GB.
“BlueString and Xdrive leverage the power of Adobe AIR and Adobe Flex so people can enjoy, customize and share their digital media over the Web within dynamic desktop applications,” said Michele Turner, Vice President of Product Management and Developer Relations, Platform Business Unit at Adobe. “We’re excited that AOL’s BlueString and Xdrive are showcases for Adobe RIA technologies, which enable businesses and developers to create engaging applications that combine the power of the desktop with the reach of the Web.”
BlueString provides the ability to manually or automatically upload photos, videos and music and easily create rich multimedia shows to share with family and friends. An innovative feature called “String it” makes it easy to collaborate, allowing several people to add media assets to one show.
BlueString offers up to 5GB of free online storage without limiting file size or bandwidth consumption and will soon give users the ability to link directly to video clips and photos from a number of leading third party media sharing sites without having to upload or move them. Any user with an active email address from any provider can register to use BlueString for free. Any AOL or AIM user can register with their existing screenname for free.
Xdrive is a free service available to all Web users at Xdrive.com. Any AOL or AIM user can register with their existing screenname for free. It manages an online storage platform that provides consumers with 5GB of free storage without limiting file size or bandwidth consumption. Upgrades to 50GB accounts are available for $9.95 per month. Xdrive is a Verisign Secure Site, and provides password protection for all sessions and stored assets. Xdrive’s high volume network and horizontally scalable processor complex provide the performance and reliability that consumers demand.
AOL® is a global Web services company that operates some of the most popular Web destinations, offers a comprehensive suite of free software and services, runs one of the largest Internet access businesses in the U.S., and provides a full set of advertising solutions. A majority-owned subsidiary of Time Warner Inc. (NYSE:TWX), AOL LLC and its subsidiaries have operations in the U.S., Europe, Canada and Asia. Learn more at AOL.com.
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AOL Corporate Communications
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