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ComputerWire: IT Industry Intelligence

America Online Inc yesterday lifted some of the tarpaulin off version 8.0 of its market-leading consumer internet service, which is due for release this fall, announcing a beta test release of the client software which features the usual array of usability and GUI enhancements.

The company also said it has gone live with a new version of its search engine, primarily powered by Google Inc's web search and sponsored links service. The AOL Search feature will also have prominent positioning for its own featured links and localized Yellow Pages content.

AOL is playing the family card with 8.0 - the software will have more functional parental controls, allowing users to manage access privileges from a single console, and providing "Report Cards", listing what web sites their children have been visiting. Email filters will also allow users to only receive messages from known addresses.

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