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Yahoo cans BlackBerry app to focus on iPhone, browser software

post #1 of 31
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In the latest sign that the iPhone is emerging as the platform of choice for companies big and small, Yahoo on Wednesday will reportedly cease work on its Mobile app for BlackBerry and other smartphones to concentrate its resources on iPhone and browser-centric development.

Word of the move was picked up by TechCrunch after developers applying to work on the application for Research In Motion's BlackBerry handsets received an email response from the search giant stating that "Yahoo has decided to cease development" of the app on May 20th.

Going forward, Yahoo will reportedly restructure its Yahoo! Mobile development team to focus on two core platforms, the iPhone, and for every other mobile handset, the browser. Other applications for BlackBerry handsets independent of the Mobile app will reportedly remain in development.

"We are reprioritizing some products to help us better deliver the best possible experiences to consumers on mobile," the company said in the email to applications. "To streamline our services, we will not develop Yahoo! Mobile for smartphones to focus our efforts on mobilizing Yahoo!, improving Yahoo! Mobile for web and Yahoo! Mobile for iPhone as well as developing new and engaging experiences for consumers, partners and advertisers."

Yahoo in February overhauled its Mobile service, rebranding and repackaging some of its assets and phasing out others. The new version was announced as a browser-based service for more than 300 mobile handsets in April but presented in a unique application for iPhone (Free, App Store) users at the same time.

Since then, Yahoo has issued at least one update to the iPhone app, which ranks No. 80 on the App Store's list of Top 100 free apps and No. 1 overall in the News category. Among its features are location-based searches, personalized news and sports, email access, an RSS reader, and tie-ins to social networking sites including Facebook, Twitter, MySpace, Bebo, Friendster, and others.

Separately, Yahoo also maintains a Yahoo! Messenger application (Free, App Store) for the iPhone as well as Inquisitor (Free, App Store), a simple web search and news application.

As TechCrunch points out, Yahoo's move to abandon development of its Mobile app for BlackBerry and other smartphones is somewhat of an about-face for the internet company, further underscoring the impact the iPhone has had on the market in just a matter of months.



Just last March, the publication asked Yahoo! Mobile marking chief Adam Taggart whether the company was positioning its future mobile developments as individual or browser-based applications.

"We are embracing both, apps and browser. We as Yahoo are all about ubiquity," Taggart said. "We have a renewed appreciation for the browser because they are getting materially better, but you can always do more with an app on your phone. In the immediate time frame you will see a lot more standalone vertical apps coming out of Yahoo."

At the time, he explained that Mobile applications under development for BlackBerries and other smartphones -- the ones his firm just axed -- were meant to assuage the appetites of consumers with those devices aspiring for an iPhone like experience.

"The smartphone app is a way to turn your smartphone into an iPhone at no additional cost, if you are envying the iPhone," he said.
post #2 of 31
They probably have a secret Palm Pre app in the cards. (j/k)
post #3 of 31
Wow. Stories like this lead me to conclude: incumbents in the handset business must be still trying to digest what's hit them

On the topic of the App Store, does anyone know if the Pre will come with something similar, and if so what it will be like? (If it doesn't, it might be DOA.... at least initially).
post #4 of 31
Yahoo still around?

who uses Yahoo? NOBBBBBBBBBBODY!
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post #5 of 31
I don't know about the italian part, but you sure act like a kid...

Anyway, this gives some of the clever programmers left at Yahoo something to do with their skills. I actually like what they've done so far with their apps.

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post #6 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by italiankid View Post

Yahoo still around?

who uses Yahoo? NOBBBBBBBBBBODY!

Given it is the second busiest site on the internet, I'd guess some people still do.

http://alexa.com/topsites
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post #7 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xian Zhu Xuande View Post

Given it is the second busiest site on the internet, I'd guess some people still do.

http://alexa.com/topsites

Surely he meant to exclude those billions of people.

Seriously though, I wold think Yahoo could make a BB and IPhone app easily so they can cash in on as many major devices as possible.
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post #8 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xian Zhu Xuande View Post

Given it is the second busiest site on the internet, I'd guess some people still do.

http://alexa.com/topsites

What's the first- the Microsoft help desk?
post #9 of 31
Poor italiankid. He's obliged to tie himself into ever tighter knots, just to maintain a silly stance regarding the iPhone.

Oh, and it's only going to get worse.
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post #10 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

Seriously though, I wold think Yahoo could make a BB and IPhone app easily so they can cash in on as many major devices as possible.

Yeah, why make such an announcement? It's almost like Yahoo is flirting with Apple.



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post #11 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xian Zhu Xuande View Post

http://alexa.com/topsites

That is a cool site! Thanks.
post #12 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by italiankid View Post

Yahoo still around?

who uses Yahoo? NOBBBBBBBBBBODY!

I do. Any company who can tell Steve Ballmer to get lost is okay by me.
post #13 of 31
No surprise here.

The iPhone has about 100x more potential than the Blackberry. The whole Apple ecosystem is a study in progressive, forward thinking, App Store, iTunes, MobileMe and all.

Yahoo is joining hordes of other developers to get in on the action. Apple's iPhone is another iPod phenomenon. One game-changing handheld device was impressive enough. But two? Goes to show where all the talent is. Hint: it's not in Redmond, WA.
post #14 of 31
I'm certainly happy that Yahoo has so much faith in the iPhone that it can stop development on other mobile platforms. It sure seems like it's taking a pretty big gamble unless Yahoo knows something the rest of us don't. Sales of the iPhone aren't that large and they're basically restricted to one carrier in the U.S. currently. Maybe Yahoo is looking a couple years into the future when the iPhone and maybe it's other Apple mobile brethren will be on all carriers. I wonder if this app can be used on the iPod Touch, also which would certainly increase the numbers.

However, this move on Yahoo's part could be driven by it's lack of cash. No matter. Any bit of leverage the iPhone can get over the BlackBerry is surely welcome to me. Why turn other platforms into an iPhone experience? Just let those people go and buy an iPhone.
post #15 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Constable Odo View Post

I'm certainly happy that Yahoo has so much faith in the iPhone that it can stop development on other mobile platforms. It sure seems like it's taking a pretty big gamble unless Yahoo knows something the rest of us don't. Sales of the iPhone aren't that large and they're basically restricted to one carrier in the U.S. currently. Maybe Yahoo is looking a couple years into the future when the iPhone and maybe it's other Apple mobile brethren will be on all carriers. I wonder if this app can be used on the iPod Touch, also which would certainly increase the numbers.

However, this move on Yahoo's part could be driven by it's lack of cash. No matter. Any bit of leverage the iPhone can get over the BlackBerry is surely welcome to me. Why turn other platforms into an iPhone experience? Just let those people go and buy an iPhone.

I don't think sales of the iPhone is the right metric though. You have to look at "number of apps available/number of apps being downloaded."

Despite not having as many handsets in the wild as rivals, Apple has still managed to mainstream the whole idea of downloading and utilizing apps on your phone, in a way that has fundamentally changed the value proposition for developers.

It doesn't do you any good to develop for a phone that sells a kajillion units if relatively few of its users are going to bother downloading apps, or if the entire download and install process is constrained in such a way as to make that unlikely.

At this point, the iPhone has entered into a "virtuous circle" phase, where ease of use drives development drives sales drives development. That's what Yahoo is looking at, not handset sales.
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post #16 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by italiankid View Post

Yahoo still around?

who uses Yahoo? NOBBBBBBBBBBODY!

Uhhh.... hundred's of millions, if not billions. Yahoo is one of the top western search website in most Asian countries. Very popular in Japan and China. Yahoo is clearly #2 in the world, behind Google in search and #2 or #3 behind AIM in chat and AIM has to be losing ground fast.
post #17 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Xian Zhu Xuande View Post

Given it is the second busiest site on the internet, I'd guess some people still do.

http://alexa.com/topsites

i dont use it. i hate the search engine. i prefer google.
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post #18 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by mesomorphicman View Post

Uhhh.... hundred's of millions, if not billions. Yahoo is one of the top western search website in most Asian countries. Very popular in Japan and China. Yahoo is clearly #2 in the world, behind Google in search and #2 or #3 behind AIM in chat and AIM has to be losing ground fast.

everyone i know has an AIM account or MSN. Not one of my friends have a yahoo account and I know thousands
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post #19 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by italiankid View Post

i dont use it. i hate the search engine. i prefer google.

Well, there you go. I don't use it/nobody uses it. Ironclad reasoning.
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post #20 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by mesomorphicman View Post

Uhhh.... hundred's of millions, if not billions. Yahoo is one of the top western search website in most Asian countries. Very popular in Japan and China. Yahoo is clearly #2 in the world, behind Google in search and #2 or #3 behind AIM in chat and AIM has to be losing ground fast.

Oh details, details.....
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post #21 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by italiankid View Post

i dont use it. i hate the search engine. i prefer google.

Quote:
Originally Posted by italiankid View Post

everyone i know has an AIM account or MSN. Not one of my friends have a yahoo account and I know thousands

Well there you go. Another apostle of the Church of Teckstud. Thank you for representing everyone on what we should be using. It's nice to have someone telling the rest of humanity what we're doing wrong.
post #22 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by sflocal View Post

Well there you go. Another apostle of the Church of Teckstud. Thank you for representing everyone on what we should be using. It's nice to have someone telling the rest of humanity what we're doing wrong.

About 1/5 of the entire world of email accounts are Yahoo, but he and friends don’t use it so it much not exist… and all of my friends agree with me.

Since the 260 million Yahoo! Mail active email addresses are also Yahoo! Messenger accounts that would be the same, and since there are IM clients that are not tied directly to email accounts they would oviously have a smaller percentage… and all of my friends agree with me.

Only 3 messenger apps beat out Yahoo for the number of active users, and AIM is not one of them. I can’t find the chart that shows the by country or by region numbers for IM clients so I’ll have to go by memory: AIM dominates in the US, MSN dominates in most of the American countries, India and Europe (I think), with Yahoo! dominating in Japan and other Asian countries… and all of my friends agree with me.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant...ging#User_base
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post #23 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

About 1/5 of the entire world of email accounts are Yahoo, but his he and friends don’t use it so it much not exist… and all of my friends agree with me.


Since the 260 million Yahoo! Mail addresses are also Yahoo! Messenger accounts that would be the same, and since there are IM clients that are not tied directly to email accounts they would oviously have a smaller percentage… and all of my friends agree with me.

Only 3 messenger apps beat out Yahoo for the number of active users, and AIM is not one of them. I can’t the chart by country or region so I’ll have to go by memory: AIM dominates in the US, MSN dominates in most of the American countries, India and Europe (I think), with Yahoo! dominating in Japan and other Asian countries… and all of my friends agree with me.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Instant...ging#User_base

True story: About 9 years ago, when I first visited China I was shocked to see large graphics covering buses and billboards with Yahoo ads, especially since I had the impression that the "backwards" Chinese had virtually no access to the Internet. Boy, was that information ever wrong.

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post #24 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

True story: About 9 years ago, when I first visited China I was shocked to see large graphics covering buses and billboards with Yahoo ads, especially since I had the impression that the "backwards" Chinese had virtually no access to the Internet. Boy, was that information ever wrong.

You dont allow private messages so Ill have to jack the thread for a second. I saw this yesterday and thought of your sig.
http://rawstory.com/08/news/2009/05/...ls-hasselbeck/
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post #25 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by teckstud View Post

What's the first- the Microsoft help desk?

post #26 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

About 1/5 of the entire world of email accounts are Yahoo, but he and friends dont use it so it much not exist and all of my friends agree with me.

Well, except for the fact that first he has to have friends.....
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post #27 of 31
[QUOTE=Constable Odo;1419003]...Sales of the iPhone aren't that large and they're basically restricted to one carrier in the U.S. currently... ...I wonder if this app can be used on the iPod Touch, also which would certainly increase the numbers.

I'm guessing the iPod Touch would be a big factor. We have two in our family and no iPhones, also some other families I know passed on the iPhone and bought Touches instead. Just my anecdotal observations.
post #28 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by Constable Odo View Post

I'm certainly happy that Yahoo has so much faith in the iPhone that it can stop development on other mobile platforms. It sure seems like it's taking a pretty big gamble unless Yahoo knows something the rest of us don't.

Why turn other platforms into an iPhone experience? Just let those people go and buy an iPhone.

They mentioned moving to web based apps for Blackberry, etc. I've read that because there are so many Blackberry models with different hardware configurations, programming for it can be more complex. Unfortunately, smartphones' web browsing experience is pretty dreadful compared to the iPhone and Safari. It would seem that Blackberries would benefit MORE for a specific app rather than relying on a sub-par bowser.

Apple's philosophy seems to be if an app runs on the current iPhone/touch OS, it will run on any iPhone or iPod touch. Pretty much any app will run on any device, except (obviously) for apps that specifically support the iPhone's camera of 3G capabilities.
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post #29 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

You dont allow private messages so Ill have to jack the thread for a second. I saw this yesterday and thought of your sig.
http://rawstory.com/08/news/2009/05/...ls-hasselbeck/

LMAO! I know, I saw him on The View and on another program where the host stormed off in anger (...what was it... MSNBC?). Gotta love Ventura. You must admit, he'd be one heck of a diversion/spoiler in the next election. Yes!

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post #30 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by jeffharris View Post

They mentioned moving to web based apps for Blackberry, etc. I've read that because there are so many Blackberry models with different hardware configurations, programming for it can be more complex. Unfortunately, smartphones' web browsing experience is pretty dreadful compared to the iPhone and Safari. It would seem that Blackberries would benefit MORE for a specific app rather than relying on a sub-par bowser.

Apple's philosophy seems to be if an app runs on the current iPhone/touch OS, it will run on any iPhone or iPod touch. Pretty much any app will run on any device, except (obviously) for apps that specifically support the iPhone's camera of 3G capabilities.

RiM has adopted WebKit which, as you know, Safari uses, and that Palm has adopted for their WebOS browser so it can have localized apps with HTML5’s new DB features. I think this type of app will be much easier to write for as it’s mainly HTML, CSS and Javascript and it can easily be scaled to different sized screens with ease and without much coding bloat.

I would like Apple to adopt the DB functions that quickly adopted in their open-source WebKit for an alternative app-type for the iPhone.


Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

LMAO! I know, I saw him on The View and on another program where the host stormed off in anger (...what was it... MSNBC?). Gotta love Ventura. You must admit, he'd be one heck of a diversion/spoiler in the next election. Yes!

He’s fun to listen to and one hell or an interesting person who has done all the coolest things that people, especially men, dream of, but there is no way he could be president in 2012. For starters, if Obama is doing okay, not even good, he’ll get re-elected, if Obama is dong exceptionally poorly it will be a Republican that will be able to take over, not a liberal Independent. That said I’ve read his three books and plan to read his fourth because he is intelligent and has been (off the top of my head) a SEAL, a biker with the Mongols, a mayor, governor, pro-wrestler, movie actor, co-invented gravity with Steven Hawking and has been married for 35 years. BTW, despite her ulta-conservative nature Hasslebeck is really hot.
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post #31 of 31
Quote:
Originally Posted by solipsism View Post

....despite her ulta-conservative nature Hasslebeck is really hot.

I guess so, but she gets huge points off for her point of view.

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