CompuServe started out this year as the nation's top-ranked online service but has since fallen behind AOL in its number of subscribers. How far behind depends on who's doing the counting; various reports say the difference is anywhere from 1 million to 1.7 million members.
But CompuServe isn't giving up so easily. Determined to regain the number-one slot, the company has added new services and taken on a minority interest in New York-based Net entertainment magazine Entertainment Drive.
The new services include American Business Information's BIZ*LIST, a database of 11 million U.S. and Canadian businesses; BulletProof Corporation's The Edge, a stock trading and paging alert system for Windows 3.1 and Windows 95; and CompuServe's own virtual world called WorldsAway.
The WorldsAway debut features a tour of Santa's North Pole digs that allows users to create their own environments and avatars. Starting December 12, CompuServe subscribers can chat with Santa and his elves, decorate a Christmas tree, and participate in other holiday-themed activities.