Tuesday, January 12, 2010

Prodigy Chief Created Online Services - WSJ.com

After selling and manufacturing some of the first business computers, Theodore Papes helped create one of the earliest online services for consumers.

Mr. Papes, who died Jan. 8 at the age of 81, led the development of Prodigy Services Co., a digital enterprise that provided online news, email, shopping and other services years before the World Wide Web.

A joint venture of International Business Machines Corp. and Sears Roebuck & Co., Prodigy was meant to introduce online services to a mass audience. Founded in 1984 and rolled out regionally starting in 1988, Prodigy caught on with the help of intensive marketing. In 1991, it passed the million-subscriber mark. But not long after, it began to flag in the face of competition from rivals such as America Online.

No comments:

Post a Comment