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AOL and IBM To Bridge IM Communities

A new pact provides Lotus Sametime 7.5 users with federated access to the AOL, AIM, and ICQ services.

America Online and IBM revealed that they are working together to connect their instant messaging communities.

Under the agreement, IBM Lotus Sametime users will be able to connect and communicate in real time with users of the AOL, AIM, ICQ and Apple iChat instant messaging services.

In the newly announced Lotus Sametime 7.5, IBM plans to provide instant messaging customers with federated access to AOL's global instant messaging network as an embedded feature for each Sametime user.

Sametime users will also be able to exchange presence information by adding AOL Screen Names and ICQ numbers to their Sametime contact lists while inviting others to add Sametime identities to their AIM Buddy List, iChat and ICQ Contact List features. The agreement also provides for access to AOL's new AIM Clearinghouse service, which will enable Sametime customers to connect to AOL's network as well as to those of customers, business partners and other enterprise instant messaging (systems.

With IBM Sametime connectivity, AOL now claims its IM services will reach more than 75 percent of all enterprise instant messaging users. AOL's existing federation partners include Microsoft, Reuters, Jabber, Antepo, Omnipod, Communicator, Parlano, Thomson Financial and Pivot Solution's IMTrader service.

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