NetZero had a great premise when it was launched back in 1998, and that concept was free Internet service. It was certainly an idea whose time had come, and NetZero’s model along with sister company Juno was the start of the web-based advertising boom. The ad serving technology that was used then has multiple patents, and was also some of the best and earliest real-time ad serving tech that focused on usage patterns by the user. After the dot com bust in early 2001, NetZero began acquiring competitors who were not able to weather the storms. The critical merger with Juno created the larger organization United Online which now runs both brands.
NetZero mail still caters to the dial-up services crowd, and what many people would consider old-fashioned really works for people who are in rural areas or cannot afford high-speed Internet access. Roughly 3% of Americans have refused the switch to high-speed broadband Internet access, and this is partly due to the fact that the fiber optic cable required for that access just is not available in parts of the country quite yet. Many homes fall less than a mile outside the end of the line for high-speed Internet like NetZero, and mail recovery is still something that is done painfully and slowly. Oddly enough, up to one-fifth of dial-up users state that absolutely nothing will get them to change away from their old, reliable service.
NetZero Mail Center allows you to write from any Internet-connected computer in the world, and now even includes junk mail once you are past the webmail login for NetZero. You can quickly and easily sign in to compose and send new messages as well as access an online version of your address book. While still offering the offline NetZero mail client, the addition of the Message Center allows you to send and receive mail even if you are away from your home PC. One of the benefits is that you will not lose the items that are in your inbox on the Message Center remote desktop, instead – they will still be waiting for the user at home. For users who would like to use NetZero mail with a POP or SMTP server, that is a viable option as well and there are simple and straightforward instructions on accomplishing these tasks available online.
The death knell has not yet been heralded for services such as Juno and NetZero webmail, and with the millions of continued users of these free and reduced cost dial-up services, they will likely be relevant into the near future.