AOL (formerly a company known as AOL Inc., originally known as America Online, and stylized as Aol.) is a web portal and online service provider based in New York. It is a brand marketed by Oath, a subsidiary of Verizon Communications. AOL was one of the early pioneers of the Internet in the mid-1990s, and the most recognized brand on the web in the United States. It originally provided a dial-up service to millions of Americans, as well as providing a web portal, e-mail, instant messaging and later a web browser following its purchase of Netscape. At the height of its popularity, it purchased the media conglomerate Time Warner in the largest merger in U.S. history. AOL rapidly declined thereafter, partly due to the decline of dial-up to broadband. AOL was eventually spun off from Time Warner in 2009, with Tim Armstrong appointed the new CEO. Under his leadership, the company invested in media brands and advertising technologies.