In a bid to boost its subscriber base, AOL, part of the Time Warner media conglomerate, announced today that it will be offering its services, such as e-mail and anti-spam software, for free to broadband users.

The free services offer is part of AOL's strategy to boost its online advertising revenue by redirecting traffic to its websites.

In the second quarter AOL, recorded a fall in revenue of 2 percent from $2.097 billion in the same quarter last year to $2.046 billion this year. The slight decline was attributable to a fall in subscriber revenue; due primarily to a decrease in the domestic AOL brand subscribers. As of June 30, 2006, the AOL service totaled 17.7 million U.S. members, a decline of 976,000 from the prior quarter and 3.1 million from the year-ago quarter.

A 40 percent decline of $129 million decline in online marketset this 11 percent decline in subscriber revenue was a 40 percent or $129 million rise in online advertising.

Time Warner President and Chief Operating Officer Jeff Bewkes said: "The next logical step for AOL (is) to capitalize further on the explosive rise in broadband usage and online advertising. With its robust and rapidly expanding advertising operation, we expect to put AOL back on a growth path.'