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Posts tagged with: Yahoo

Get Yahoo on your Andorid Phone

Yahoo has finally released Yahoo! Search, Yahoo! Mail & Yahoo! Messenger for the Android mobile platform. With the yahoo search widget, android users can access web search directly from their mobile’s home screen.

yahoo mobile andorid

The user interface of this widget is pretty simple and fits nicely on the size of your phone screen. You can interact with the widget by not only typing (via the touch screen) but also using your own voice. (Yes, it supports voice input, but I believe this is a feature of the phone/android OS itself). But regardless of how you enter the query, Y! search suggestions will help you to find what you’re looking for. The new Yahoo! Mobile search results also shows different shortcuts, news and deeper results only a tap away. For instance if you search for “world cup” it gives a concise set of the latest scores and news, with deeper results about the games, the players the stats and so on.

Yahoo Search Widget for Android

To get Yahoo! search widget on your android phone, firstly download the app from the Android Market and then touch and hold your homescreen. A list will popup, select Yahoo Search from the widget menu — and viola; it’s going to be on your home screen!

Yahoo Mail & Messenger for Android

Yahoo! Mail and Yahoo! Messenger is also available on all Android devices now as standalone applications, but are also integrated to provide an optimal Yahoo! communications experience. Both the apps comes with features like rich text formatting, Yahoo! emoticons, and access to the Yahoo! Address Book, in apps that are designed from the ground up for the Android platform.

Features Yahoo! Mail App for Android:

– Push notification of new email messages
– Availability of Yahoo! Address Book as well as contacts in the native phone address book
– Good Search Feature. You can search email messages by sender, recipient, subject and keywords in the body of the email
– You can upload photos as attachments directly from camera or your android’s photo gallery
– You can toggle between the Yahoo! Mail and Yahoo! Messenger apps with ease

Get Yahoo! Mail App for Andorid here.

Features of Yahoo! Messenger App for Android:

– Easy Contact management. Check friends’ status updates & availability as well as update their own status & availability
– Send instant messages to friends via SMS text messages
– Y! Messenger can run in the background with full multitasking support
– Full use of emoticons and rich text formatting
– Send photos to friends directly from the phone’s camera or the photo gallery

Get Yahoo! Messenger for Android here.

You can try out the Yahoo! Search widget and other available yahoo widgets by scanning the barcode below with your Android phone.

Yahoo Barcode for Android


Yahoo Real-Time Search Suggestions

Yahoo has recently updated their Yahoo! search assist to provide near real-time search suggestions to the users. Yahoo Search assist is very similar to Google Suggest that gives you search phrase suggestions as you type in a query in the search box.

However with the new Yahoo Search assist the suggestions that you will get are likely to be ‘real-time’ and a bit ‘time aware’ says Linda Wang, Senior Product Manager of Yahoo Search. So if you want to find out who will Netherlands play next in the world cup, you can search – “Netherlands vs” and Yahoo search assist will automatically show you suggestion based on real-time results.

yahoo realtime search assist

This feature also works in the Yahoo News search, thus when you are searching for a news story you will get real time news search suggestions based on the keywords that you enter in the search box.

Yahoo News Search Suggest

For some reason, I couldn’t really test out this feature as its not working at my end. This might be one of those “US only” additions. I personally think that this feature would be excellent for mobile devices.


Yahoo Image Search Now Shows Points of Interest

If you are a frequent traveler then you would appreciate this brand new feature of Yahoo image search that lets you refine your image search results by points of interest whenever you search for a particular travel destination or location.

For example, if you search for Rome, Yahoo Image search will automatically show up a special column containing categories of a whole bunch of ‘places’ from rome that you are likely to be interested in. Clicking on any of the categories will show an overlay of images so that you can virtually take a tour of the image results without leaving the original search results page.

yahoo-image-search-travel-queries

To test it’s usefulness & accuracy, I searched for Kuala Lumpur, and Yahoo did manage to give me a pretty decent list of places that most tourists would like to go.

Try it and let me know what do you think about this cool new feature of Yahoo Image Search!


Yahoo New Homepage – More Personalized

yahoo-logo

Yahoo has recently updated their home with a brand new design and has included some social & personalization features to spice things up a little bit.

yahoo-new-home

Well personally, I don’t feel that the changes that yahoo made will give them much boost, in terms of getting new users to use their search engine. Probably some of the features may be useful to people who likes to have a ‘start page’ on their browser and are already using Yahoo as their default page.

However for someone like me, who never goes to the Yahoo homepage won’t really feel any difference. What is Yahoo anyway? Is it a search engine? Well to me yahoo just looks like a tabloid, which is cluttered with articles, links and ads. And 8 out of 10 times, those featured articles on the home page are mostly celebrity gossips. If Yahoo really wants to improve their business on search and online advertising, they need to really find out their core objective and purpose of existence and focus on the important areas rather than tapping into everything.

Yahoo is not small by any means, Yahoo is still the world’s most visited website. However they for some reason can’t capitalize on that and slowly slipping away from the real game.

What New in Yahoo’s Homepage?

Nothing ground breaking or earth shattering! It now lets users to add their favorite sites to the left side of the page. This includes popular social media applications such as Facebook and Twitter. Once the new search page is up and running, a user’s favorite applications will also show up on the search page itself. You can also add in your own favorite sites on that list. Once you click on any of the links, it sort of opens the page under a frame within the yahoo page along with a huge banner ad. (Well, I’m not sure whether users would appreciate the ad on that position).

Yahoo now shows the top 10 most searched queries on their home page, which is pretty cool. I guess showing that information on the home page would tempt people to find out more about those topics via Yahoo search.

And thats pretty much it! They have tried to strip down some of the unnecessary stuffs, and made the home page a bit lighter and more organized. However, to me it still looks like an online tabloid and not a “Search Engine”. I don’t think adding these features will actually encourage people to search at yahoo.

I think people will start using Yahoo Search more, if http://search.yahoo.com was their homepage. I have always been a fan of Yahoo Search as they were always the 2nd best in Search after Google. In fact in many cases, when Google failed to give what I was looking for, Yahoo saved me! Now that Bing.com is here, Yahoo’s chances in Search is almost gone – unless they agree to merge with Microsoft. (Personally I think it would be the best thing to do for both the companies).

See the Yahoo Design in Action

Yahoo is slowly rolling out the new design in different regions/countries all over the world. It is already live in US, and most parts of Asia (Malaysia, Singapore — at least) are now seeing a notification on their Yahoo page that sort of asks you to try the new design by clicking on a link. You can try it now by visiting: http://m.www.yahoo.com/

Bonus: Yahoo Easter Egg

Yahoo has still kept their hidden Easter egg on their new home page. Try clicking on the “!” exclamation mark on their logo and see what happens! [You will need to keep your speakers/headphones on…]


Yahoo to Introduce New Ad Products

yahoo-logoYahoo! Inc. has reported that they are going to launch three brand new targeting products for brand and performance marketers that are specially designed to help them reach the audiences that matter most when advertising online.

Barry Schwartz at Search Engine Land explains that this will give advertisers the ability to show graphic ads to users based on their previous search history. Advertisers will also be able to target those graphic ads based based on what other web sites that user visited and their actions on those web sites.

As the economy continues to put pressure on advertising budgets, marketers are looking for increased accountability for every dollar they spend. Yahoo!’s new targeting products significantly improve the ability for search and display advertisers to reach their target audience, providing increased efficiency and accountability,” said Michael Walrath, senior vice president, Advertising Marketplaces Group, Yahoo!. “Yahoo! remains incredibly well positioned to meet the growing advertiser demand for performance marketing offerings, and no other company can provide marketers with such scale and expertise across search and display advertising.

The new Ad products include:

Search Retargeting – This will give advertisers the ability to target display advertising based on user search activities and past search history.

Enhanced Retargeting – This feature will allows advertisers to deliver dynamically generated display ads across the Yahoo! network based on user activity on an advertiser’s site.

Enhanced Targeting – This feature will give Advertisers more capability to manage their search advertising campaign, including ad scheduling and demographic targeting within search etc.

You can get more coverage on the Yahoo’s New ad products at Techmeme.


Carol Bartz To Be Named Yahoo CEO

carol-bartz-yahoo-ceo

Finally the impossible has happened! Yahoo has managed to find a New CEO to replace Jerry Yang. According to Wall Street Journal, Carol Bartz, former chief executive of software company Autodesk Inc., has accepted an offer to become Yahoo’s next CEO.

Wall Street Journal writes:

Ms. Bartz, 60 years old, will face a number of challenges as she tries to turn around Yahoo’s flagging performance and stock price. Some investors have been lobbying for a break-up of the Internet giant, for instance. Yahoo faces tough competition from Internet rivals such as Google Inc.

TechCrunch speculates that Bartz is most definitely an ally of founder and outgoing CEO Jerry Yang as they both sit on Cisco’s board. Bartz also sits on Intel’s board with Yahoo president Susan Decker. So this shows that she really has some strong connection with existing Yahoo’s management team.

Yahoo is yet to release any official statement on this regard. So I’ll try to keep an eye on the Yahoo’s Corporate Blog for latest updates.

Don’t worry, like always I’ll keep you informed! So what do you think of Yahoo’s New CEO? What would be her possible strategy & Goal – Save yahoo or Sell yahoo?

Robert Scoble suggests that Yahoo should integrate all their services and produce a live-feed like service, similar to what friendfeed & facebook is doing.

He writes:

Yahoo is in a good position — if it builds a decent news feed like what friendfeed and facebook have and does it quickly. That is the key to integrating all of its services together (and giving its sexy services like Flickr and Upcoming.org a shot).

John Battelle highlights that Bartz does have a lot of media experience even though she may have a lot of experience in other parts of the technology world.

He writes:

Yahoo needs a stronger suite of media-savvy executives now that Weiner and Rosensweig are gone.

Catch more discussion on this topic @ Techmeme.

Update: CNBC has confirmed that Bartz is taking the job! CNBC writes:

Shares initially climbed about 1 percent on the news but quickly settled back as investors began to digest whether Bartz would indeed be the best executive at the right time for the struggling internet pioneer. Speculation about Bartz transition into Yahoo’s C-suite began circulating last week, and while her name initially sparked raised eyebrows


Delicious Audio Player

Delicious Audio Player Robin Wauters of Techcrunch reports that the social bookmarking pioneer – Delicious has recently updated their IE and Firefox add-ons – which includes fixing a couple of known bugs and adding some cool new features.

Among the new feature what caught attention of many user is – a brand new audio player to play your MP3 bookmarks inside the browser.

Former GM of Yahoo! Music Ian Rogers confirms that Delicious is actually using Yahoo! Mediaplayer to support this cool new feature. He writes:

It’s very cool in that it is a single line of javascript and reads simple, easy to author, HTML on the page to create the play buttons. The page author needs only add the single line of javascript, then wrap an MP3 link in an href and voila, you have an inline player.

Delicious Audio Player


Yahoo Introduced Pictures in Sponsored Ads

Erick Schonfeld at Techcrunch reports that Yahoo is now testing with pictures inside Sponsored Advertisements.

For instance, when you perform a search on Yahoo for “eBay” you will notice that the sponsored ad contains a graphical logo of Ebay, just like the above screen shoot.

Yahoo’s Spokesperson confirmed that the company is testing new search ad units that include “images, brand icons, videos, search boxes and deep links.”

My Two Cents

I certainly don’t think that this is a bad idea for Yahoo. Infact for brand queries, I think it will really help the advertiser to increase its brand recognition as the searchers will over time associate the logo/image with the brand easily.

But the downside of this feature is, the advertisers will probably spending more because the CTR (Click-Through-Ratio) will definitely be a lot higher compared to the traditional sponsored ads. So even if the advertiser ranks really well organically, people will tend to click on the sponsored ad (with a Logo) without being bothered to see the organic results down below it.


Yahoo Search Assist Adds Image Preview

Yahoo Search Logo Techcrunch reports today that Yahoo has started to show Image previews inside Yahoo Search Assist.

So basically when you to Yahoo to perform a search, you enter a keyword and Yahoo Search assist can automatically show you some other related search keywords that you may be interested in. This feature is more powerful than Google’s Autocomplete feature as it displays logical queries that are related to the search term.

But now it seems like Yahoo has taken things even further by adding Image Preview within Yahoo Search Assist. So when you are searching for something, yahoo will not only recommend you some other related search keywords but it will also show you pictures related to that keyword inside the search assist box. For instance a search for Obama displays the following:


Top 10 Searches for 2008

Yahoo 2008 Search

Yahoo Buzz has came up with a nice report of the Top 10 Searches of this year – 2008.

Yahoo writes:

Olympian highs and politics as unusual, to celebrity hopefuls and market meltdowns: Through millions of searches and thousands of stories each day, people sought to make sense of the world around them. Take a look back at what captivated our imagination and fueled our passions in 2008, a very historic year indeed.

So here is the Top 10 Searches for 2008 in Yahoo:

  1. Britney Spears
  2. WWE
  3. Barack Obama
  4. Miley Cyrus
  5. RuneScape
  6. Jessica Alba
  7. Naruto
  8. Lindsay Lohan
  9. Angelina Jolie
  10. American Idol

To come up with the Yahoo! Year in Review, Yahoo editors analyze different search queries based upon many factors such absolute volume and growth versus previous periods, to figure out which themes and trends bubble to the surface. The Yahoo! Year in Review for top searches were based on absolute volume and growth versus previous periods on search queries.


Microsoft to Pay $20 Billion for Yahoo Search

Microsoft_yahoo_deal

After a lot of speculation earlier, The UK’s Times Online is reporting that Microsoft is in talks to acquire Yahoo’s online search business for $20 billion and install Jon Miller and Ross Levinsohn to run the company.

The whole thing may sound very reasonable to you, but the price sounds really ridiculous as Yahoo’s whole market cap right now is only about $15 billion.

Times Writes:

The proposal forms the centrepiece of a complex transaction that would see Microsoft support a new management team to take control of Yahoo. But there is no intention of Microsoft tabling another takeover bid for the web giant, after its aborted $47.5 billion offer this summer.
It is thought that Jonathan Miller, ex-chairman and chief executive of AOL, and Ross Levinsohn, a former president of Fox Interactive Media, have been lined up to lead the new management team. Senior directors at Microsoft and Yahoo are understood to have agreed the broad terms of a deal, but there is no guarantee that it will succeed.

Kara Swisher at AllThingsD reports:

A report in the Times of London in which Microsoft would buy Yahoo’s search business in a convoluted $20 billion deal that would include well-known Internet execs Jon Miller and Ross Levinsohn, is–in the words of one key player–”total fiction.”
Actually, that’s Levinsohn speaking, on the record. But that’s also the essential word from all key players regarding the Times’ report.
BoomTown has spoken to top sources at Yahoo (YHOO) and Microsoft (MSFT) too and all scoff at such a deal now taking place or that either side has been in any such discussions of late.

As you can see one of the key player of this mysterious rumor – Ross Levinsohn has called it – ”total fiction.” But how can this be another stupid rumor when Times is reporting the deal in such detail as below:

Under the terms of the proposed transaction, Microsoft would provide a $5 billion facility to the Miller and Levinsohn management team. The duo would raise an additional $5 billion from external investors.
This cash would be used to buy convertible preference shares and warrants which would give it a holding in excess of 30% of Yahoo.
The external investors would also have the right to appoint three of Yahoo’s 11 board directors. The talks with Yahoo involve Microsoft obtaining a 10-year operating agreement to manage the search business. It would also receive a two-year call option to buy the search business for $20 billion. That would leave Yahoo to run its own e-mail, messaging, and content services.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has said repeatedly that they are not interested in buying Yahoo, although he has not completely ruled out a search deal of some sort.

But sources at Microsoft has said that they have been waiting for Yahoo to get another CEO in place, after Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang recently announced that he will be stepping down from his position for good.

But some folks at Yahoo has also said recently that it is not currently engaged in any kind of talks with Microsoft, even about a more likely search deal.

So Is this whole thing another rumor? Who Knows….Only time will tell! Share your views in comments!

Visit Techmeme to see all the discussion that are going around this deal.

Update

Michael Arrington of Techcrunch spoiled all the thrill by actually confirming the news with both Microsoft & Yahoo. And guess what…. both the parties completely denied all allegations!

Read What Others Are Saying about This

Another Microsoft Yahoo Deal in the Works? – ReadWriteWeb

A new, elaborate $20 billion deal for Microsoft to buy Yahoo Search? – VentureBeat

Microsoft-Yahoo Deal Back On? – Shoemoney

Report: Microsoft In Talks with Yahoo Again – The Microsoft Blog

Update: Microsoft, Yahoo reportedly in talks – The Microsoft Blog

Reports Of New Microsoft-Yahoo Search Deal Hard To Believe – TechCrunch


Toby Coppel Decides to Leave Yahoo

Toby Coppel Yahoo Executive Its looks like Yahoo is losing all their big guns – as today Kara Swisher of AllThingsD reports that Toby Coppel, Managing Directory of Yahoo Europe & Canada has decided to leave Yahoo. Kara writes that this departure is not related to recent Jerry Yang’s decision of stepping down from the CEO position of Yahoo.

Toby Coppel’s job covered the major Western European markets (including UK, France, Germany, Italy, Spain, Scandinavia), as well as Canada. His successor is going to be Rich Riley, who is currently SVP of Europe’s Advertiser & Publisher Group of Yahoo, Previously Riley was the head of Yahoo’s Small & Medium Business Group in the U.S.

Toby Coppel, who has joined Yahoo during the term of Yahoo’s CEO Terry Semel, has successfully managed European operations for Yahoo for well over 18 months. He has spent a lot of time restructuring and making massive cuts for Yahoo.

Coppel says:

“I have been transitioning our European business, restructuring it and making it stronger, as Yahoo is moving to product development on a global platform,” said Coppel. “While there is more work, there is now a strong team in place, focused on going forward and it needs to spread its wings.”

Looks like all the Top-level executives are leaving Yahoo for good, leaving the troubled search giant alone.

More discussion going at Techmeme.


Yahoo Glue – All in One Page

yahoo-glue-launched-worldwideWhen you search for a very popular term in google, you will notice that a variety of different kinds of results show up including videos, news articles, blog posts, pictures, regular search results etc. Google called this feature Universal Search.

Yahoo also has a similar service that they opened to a limited number of countries called – Yahoo Glue. Amit Agarwal recently reported that Yahoo has opened up this service to all countries.

So basically if you search for a renowned person that is likely to generate a lot of different kind of results (e.g. news, photos, videos etc.) you will be able to see it’s effectiveness clearly. Amit shares the following screen shot which appears if you search for Barack Obama in Yahoo Glue.

barack-obama-yahooglue

Read more about Yahoo Glue in Yahoo! Cool Things of the day blog.


Yahoo CEO Jerry Yang Decides to Step Down

Jerry Yang Yahoo CEO Decides to Step down from CEORight after Jerry Yang’s Interview at the Web 2.0 Summit, the whole blogosphere was demanding Jerry to step down from his CEO position… and now it looks like he has finally taken the initiative to search for a new CEO to replace him as he plans to step down and go back to his former role as Chief Yahoo!

The official press releases from Yahoo says:

Yahoo! Inc. (Nasdaq:YHOO) today announced that its Board of Directors has initiated a search for a new Chief Executive Officer. Jerry Yang, co-Founder of Yahoo!, has decided to return to his former role as Chief Yahoo! upon the appointment of his successor as CEO, and he will also continue to serve on the Board. Yang, 40, assumed the CEO role at the Board’s request in June 2007, and he has led Yahoo! through a strategic repositioning and transformation of its platform. Chairman Roy Bostock, working with the independent directors and in consultation with Jerry Yang, is leading the process of assessing potential candidates and determining finalists for consideration. The search will encompass both internal and external candidates, and the Board has retained Heidrick & Struggles, a leading international executive search firm, to assist in the process.

Jerry also wrote a personal memo to all yahoo employees (which was obtained by BoomTown).

Continue Reading


Jerry Yang Making A Fool of Himself

Jerry Yang - CEO, Yahoo

Jerry Yang - CEO, Yahoo

Yahoo’s current CEO Jerry Yang very recently gave an interview in the Web 2.0 Summit that has been described as a train wreck, self-delusional, and as making a mockery of the vaunted company he helped create. Andy Beal of Marketing Pilgrim thinks that Jerry should step down from the CEO post and TechCrunch on the other hand states Jerry is Just Out of Gas!

I seriously don’t understand what is wrong with him. I know that it’s not easy to become the CEO of a company like Yahoo!, but lets face the facts — he was never forced to become the CEO, He wanted it badly to bring change in the company back in June 2007. In the official Yahoo Blog he wrote (June 18th 2007) –

I look forward to teaming more closely with her as we pursue our joint vision. What is that vision? A Yahoo! that executes with speed, clarity and discipline. A Yahoo! that increases its focus on differentiating its products and investing in creativity and innovation. A Yahoo! that better monetizes its audience. A Yahoo! whose great talent is galvanized to address its challenges. And a Yahoo! that is better focused on what’s important to its users, customers, and employees.

Lets identify the key points from the above quote:

  • Focus on Differentiating Products & Investing in Creativity & Innovation
  • – They have been very late to adapt to change and often acted as a ‘copy cat’.

  • Monetize the Yahoo Audience
  • – Yahoo still can’t monetize their audience well.

  • Focus on What’s important to Users, Customer & Employees
  • – They are still far behind in determining whats important for their users & customers and most importantly they can’t make their shareholders happy.

And last but not the least, two major deals (one with Microsoft & Google) were canceled while he is still holding his chair. Now I know he may only take a $1 dollar pay cheque from Yahoo, but that certainly doesn’t give him the right to destroy Yahoo completely. When Microsoft came knocking at Yahoo’s door a number times with an acquisition offer of $31/per share, Jerry was not willing to sell his company to Microsoft and now suddenly after being dumped by Google from their ad deal, Jerry says – “Its best for Microsoft to Buy Yahoo…”. Just watch the video and see how Jerry Yang, the current CEO of Yahoo! Makes a complete fool of himself!


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