Keith Bare tipped me of to this story about AOL's VoIP play which I somehow missed yesterday, but follows up on an earlier post.
AOL is clearly able to make a strong run. When you think about it, not only can they offer a typical VoIP like experience, but the ability to integrate with Instant Messaging, Games, Chat Rooms, gives them a market advantage over say, Yahoo which has not really gone further than to add VoIP to their Yahoo Messenger.
Microsoft, with XBox Live, another Level3 customer, is a great test bed. Now integrate the business services Microsoft wants to be able to sell--conferencing using PowerPoint, the connected Office, etc, which is why they bought Placeware and they are a big business customer opportunity too.
Remember, AOL is all about simple and their VoIP service will be simple to use. AOL also has a history of selling phone service. They resold AT&T back in the early 90's with great success.