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Apple turns off eWorld, turns to Net

Apple Computer will announce the demise of its eWorld online service and outline its strategy for the Net. The company's plans will be detailed at a press conference this week.

Apple Computer will announce the demise of its eWorld online service and outline its strategy for the Net. The company's plans will be detailed at a press conference this week.

Apple executives have confirmed that the company is pulling the plug on eWorld on March 31. Subscribers will reportedly be turned away starting today.

Last fall, Apple had announced that it would transform eWorld from a proprietary online service into a Web site. Now, eWorld will disappear altogether as a branded service and in its place Apple will greatly expand its presence on the Web.

The announcement isn't a surprise to industry followers. "eWorld never caught momentum," said Pieter Hartsook, editor of The Hartsook Letter. "It was clearly a stepchild of AOL and it was Macintosh only. It tried to compete with the general marketing demands of an AOL, instead of exclusively focusing on Mac customers. There was just not a whole lot of reason to go with eWorld."