Boybands were the fad in the late 90's.
U2 had POP which was a flop but had a nice tour that was setting records up until they were foolish enough to do another leg in America in the small market venues.
Album-wise, POP could not answer the boyband onslaught.
U2 coexisted by following up POP with a greatest hits compilation featuring one of their most accessible b-sisdes - Sweetest Thing - being reworked then released as a single complete with Boyzone in the music video.
Then they released All That Your Can't Leave Behind - which brought rock back to the limelight, and saved and entire music genre from being obliterated by boybands.