yahoo

Yahoo has been on a mission to strengthen their mobile products for a while now and to push that envelope even further, the company has now announced they'll be acquiring mobile analytics firm Flurry after having reached a definitive agreement. Flurry, was started in 2008 and today has reached over 170,000 developers across 1.4 billion devices monthly with their services being offered to pretty much every mobile operating system out there one way or another.

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Some viewed it as inevitable that Yahoo would flip the switch for both Facebook and Google sign-in options to be disabled in favor of its own account system. The popular photo sharing service offers a solid platform for hobbyists to upload and share snaps they've captured with smartphones and/or more professional setups. If you access Flickr through Facebook or Google, you'll soon be prompted to create a new Yahoo account.

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The search engine that was first launched five years ago by Microsoft in 2009 as a competitor to the giant multinational corporation, Google, now has a global markets share of 5.62% across desktops and 2.64% across mobile devices. Bing is currently ranked as the world’s third most popular search engine and sits behind Yahoo’s 8.22% and Google’s massive 83.04% desktop search engine market share.

However, Microsoft is not just trying to get users to visit their own website – they are playing the covert operations game and acting as the backend for many services you and your friends may use. In fact, you might be loving Bing and not even know it.

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Microsoft’s Bing search engine has become the first in the world to introduce pop-up notifications for those who decide to seek out child abuse content including child pornography. The system will be launching in the United Kingdom first.

The new system will first notify users that they are searching for illegal content and offer details on available counseling services.

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Recently-hired Yahoo CEO, Marissa Mayer, has kicked off a new endeavor at Yahoo in which all employees will receive their choice of a free smartphone, including the Nokia Lumia 920. The program called "Yahoo! Smart Phones, Smart Fun!" is intended to get workers using the same technologies as their customers and was announced to Yahoo employees across 22 countries in a memo, part of which said:

"We'd like our employees to have devices similar to our users, so we can think and work as the majority of our users do."

Yahoo workers will get to choose from the Nokia Lumia 920, iPhone 5, Samsung Galaxy S3, HTC One X, and HTC EVO 4G LTE and will cover the corresponding monthly voice and data plans as well. In a blow to RIM, Yahoo has made it part of their IT policy to no longer support Blackberries.

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The Lumia 710, a budget low cost Windows Phone, has been featured in an article over at Yahoo! recommending good free smartphones (tied to carrier terms). There are six handsets in total: iPhone 3G, LG Phoenix, Droid Pro, LG Enlighten, LG Rumor Touch and the Nokia Lumia 710

As noted in the article, the 710 sports 4G connectivity, a 1.4Ghz chip, 3.7" screen, 5MP camera and the latest version of the Windows Phone OS. Looking at the other competitor handsets, it illustrates just how aggressive Nokia is with pricing their Lumia family of smartphones.

Soruce: Yahoo!thanks soulzero for the heads up!

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Yahoo! finally fixes IMAP issues

There was me thinking everyone fell asleep at Yahoo! headquarters. It seems they have reportedly fixed the huge IMAP issue that has had people using more data than they should on not only Windows Phone 7, but iPhone too. Just in time for the pre-NoDo update, oh... maybe not.

Rafael Rivera kept an eye on the Yahoo connection as to whether or not they would update their "imapgate" software. Today, he "was pleasantly surprised to see they had upgraded from 0.7.65_12.286037 to 0.7.65_14.298026 fixing the issue." While he can't comment on the exact millisecond the update was published, Rafael suspects it was rolled out earlier this week. 

It’s nice to see Yahoo! fixing problems that arise, although I suppose I’m just an insensitive badass sat on my podium with my shiny ActiveSync account. Are you a Yahoo! affected customer? If so, have you continued to experience issues with data usage today with access via IMAP to your account (should you monitor your traffic)?

Source: WithinWindows

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By now, it's no secret that the data problems some Windows Phone users were experience was the result of Yahoo! email sucking the life out of your data. Yahoo! has apologized for the problem and is working with Microsoft on a fix.  However, in an effort some see as deflecting the blame, Yahoo! released the following statement,

"The issue on the Windows Phones is specific to how Microsoft chose to implement IMAP for Yahoo! Mail and does not impact Yahoo! Mail on these other mobile devices. Yahoo! has offered to provide Microsoft a near-term solution for the implementation they chose, and is encouraging Microsoft to change to a standard way of integrating with Yahoo! Mail, which would result in a permanent fix."

Well... it now appears that this problem isn't as exclusive to Windows Phone 7 as Yahoo! would hope. Within Windows programmer Rafael Rivera, who helped identify the initial problem, has done further testing to see if the problem existed on other platforms.  Rivera  discovered that the standard IMAP protocol Yahoo! that is used with the iPhone (the protocol Yahoo! feels Microsoft should use) also returns excess data.

So much for Windows Phone 7 exclusivity.

Source: WithinWindows  Via: BGR

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Sure, it's a couple days late, but what's that between friends? Yes folks, the official Flickr app from Yahoo! has finally arrived and it is as glorious as you expected it to be.

We won't go into too much detail now, just run and grab it in the Marketplace as we think it was worth the wait.

Bonus: Turns out Flickr was holding out on us as the app has a Live Tile, which seems to update every hour with a new, random pic.

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While it has been confirmed that Yahoo! email was the rascal that sucked the data out of your Windows Phone, Yahoo! is now apologizing for their part in the situation.  In a written statement, Yahoo! shares,

"Tens of millions of people check their Yahoo Mail from their mobile device each day, and we know they want their mobile mail experience to be fast, rich, and real-time.  While our default settings on all mobile platforms realize this approach, we have determined that an inefficiency exists in the synchronization of e-mail between Windows Phone Mail clients and Yahoo Mail, which can result in larger than expected data usage for some users."

While Yahoo and Microsoft are working to deliver a fix for this problem, Yahoo! notes that the data issue was not affecting other phone platforms. In a follow up statement to CNET, Yahoo states,

"The issue on the Windows Phones is specific to how Microsoft chose to implement IMAP for Yahoo! Mail and does not impact Yahoo! Mail on these other mobile devices. Yahoo! has offered to provide Microsoft a near-term solution for the implementation they chose, and is encouraging Microsoft to change to a standard way of integrating with Yahoo! Mail, which would result in a permanent fix."

It's nice to see that the problem has been identified and a solution in the works. And while Yahoo! has apologized for the inconvenience, it almost sounds as if they are trying to shift the blame to Microsoft or, is Yahoo! simply re-assuring other platforms that this data issue isn't possible on those phones?

Source: CNET

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It's been whispered about and openly discussed at XDA for some time, but it has now been confirmed that Yahoo! email is the so-called "data hog" culprit on Windows Phone. To refresh, some users were reporting large amounts of data traffic being sent from their phones, resulting in some people approaching or going over their capped data limit. Yet others saw no such behavior. Microsoft finally investigated and found the source themselves but refused to name them publicly, instead they tried to address it behind doors.

Now Raphael Rivera, part of the ChevronWP7 team, has gone ahead and created some sophisticated tests to nail down the offending app.  Yahoo email has been suspected by many for some time (see here and here) but now seemingly concrete proof has been demonstrated. To sum up the technical by Rivera, Yahoo appears to be sending around 25 times the amount of data that it needs to, which is quite an increase. As a result, Rivera recommends the following for Yahoo! mail users:

To workaround this, I strongly recommend Yahoo mail users reconfigure the phone to not transmit data via a cellular connection (Settings –> Cellular –> Data roaming options). As an alternative, you can set your Yahoo account to only Download new content only on manual trigger (Yahoo Mail –> Settings –> Sync Settings).

Sounds like sage advice. Seeing as Yahoo is the culprit here, this seems to explain why some of us did not ever experience such behavior, while others did. This also means that it's not WP7's fault but rather something on Yahoo's end that needs to be addressed. Read more on the nitty-gritty on Rivera's page here.

Update: Microsoft is now officially acknowledging the issue: "Microsoft and Yahoo! have worked together to identify a fix, which will be rolled out in the coming weeks.". There also is a rare problem with Exchange Active Sync (EAS) which should be fixed in a software update.

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So after months and months of wheelin' and dealin', Microsoft and Yahoo have finally come to terms on a partnership that will take them both closer to Google in terms of market share. As CEO Steve Ballmer puts it, "a stronger No. 2." (Ahem.)

In a nutshell: If you go to the Yahoo search page, you'll see the Yahoo search page. But Microsoft's Bing will be doing the heavy lifting. Same goes at all Yahoo owned and operated sites. Data sharing between the two companies will be "the minimum necessary to operate and improve the combined search platform." And 88 percent of the search revenue on Yahoo-branded sites stays with Yahoo for the first 5 years of the 10-year agreement. Bottom line is Yahoo's anticipating somewhere in the neighborhood of $275 million a year once things are approved and up and running.

At this point, it's tough to say what, if anything, this may mean for Windows Mobile, other than changing up search options. But you can read the entire press release here. After the break, the key terms of the deal as put forth by Microsoft, and video from Ballmer and Yahoo CEO Carol Bartz (both of whom will be on a conference call later today). And for the truly hard-core, the two companies have set up a joint Web site here.

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Last week we reported that it was likely that crazy-like-a-fox Carl Icahn was setting his sights on forcing Yahoo to accept a merger offer from Microsoft -- never mind that said offer had been taken off the table and definitely never mind that Microsoft had been making googly-eyes (pun intended) at AOL. So that happened: Icahn has his seats on the board and is pushing for a deal.

Pushing around Microsoft ain't like pushing around Motorola, though. For one thing, unlike Motorola, their executives use email. Witness this one from platforms and services president Kevin Johnson, who write essentially puts the kaibosh on the idea that they're in talks now -- but he doesn't rule them out in the future. It will have to wait until after Wednesday's “big announcement,” purported to relate to Live Search getting better (yet again). (Hey -- at least he admitted the branding sucks.)

The amount of noise Microsoft has been making lately regarding online services is reaching jet-engine-proportions, more on that in a future post.

Meanwhile, the latest Microsoft plan is apparently to just partner with Yahoo or just buy their search marketing division. This plan is starting to get Icahn angry. You don't want to see Icahn when he's angry.

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Google Maps and Microsoft Live Search certainly aren't the only search games in town. Yahoo has updated its oneSearch service with oneSearch Shortcut, which hooks into your today screen and offers location-based search for select phones. Also new is the voice search feature, which brings it in line with Microsoft's Live Search.

Check out Yahoo's oneSearch page for more info on the service, or head over to m.yahoo.com/shortcut from your mobile browser.

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Looks like Yahoo Go development is continuing apace with the release of Yahoo Go 3 (Beta). You can grab a download here, but a perusal of the compatible devices list seems to indicate that it's only compatible with Windows Mobile Standard for now.

New features include:

  • An integrated at-a-glance Yahoo screen
  • Improved Yahoo oneSearch
  • Prettier design and navigation, complete with clouds -- because your data is stored, you know, in the Cloud. wink
  • Full-on widget support, with in-app widgets like MySpace and eBay

Interestingly, we haven't heard mum since Yahoo struck a deal with HTC over a year ago to pre-install the app on HTC devices. Perhaps, like ourselves, HTC was disappointed with Yahoo Go 2, which replaced the awesome Outlook integration with so-so in-app email. We're downloading Yahoo Go 3.0 now to see if that's changed, but not expecting it to. Now that the Yahoo Microsoft merger is not going to happen, Yahoo Go 3 is probably going to be your best bet for getting your Yahoo On for the foreseeable future.

Thanks to Amar for the tip!

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Whoops! Microsoft and Yahoo Deal is OFF.

What many thought to be the biggest deal between two heavyweights, Microsoft and Yahoo, is offiically over.

Long story short, talks broke down as Yahoo refused to budge from their $37 per share requirement (MS would "only" go as high as $33). Clearly something changed with Microsoft as TechCrunch put it:

Microsoft is making it clear that this is not just a breakdown in discussions between the companies. They are withdrawing their earlier bid and are saying they will not go hostile. They
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You know us. We can't pass up an opportunity to say “I told you so.” It's a weakness, really. So when Ina Fried reported on Steve Ballmer's comments during Mix '08 (the same place where Ballmer gave us Monkey Dance Redux), our beady, self-aggrandizing eyes lit up when we came to the section about the acquisition of Sidekick-maker Danger:

“The Danger acquisition is really about building up an application and service aspect on top of our Windows Mobile platform,” he said. “Danger is really a service application experience and we want to make sure we get that in market on a great set of phones.”

Sounds a bit like what we said immediately after the announcement:

What Microsoft is really interested in, it seems, is Danger's services - even though the Sidekick is the simplest of smart phones these days, it does a stellar job of storing its data “in the cloud” -- exactly where it belongs.

Crowing aside, Fried's post is also interesting because it addresses a concern that many had with both the Danger acquisition and the attempted Yahoo grab: these companies don't use Microsoft tech, while Microsoft almost exclusively uses Microsoft tech. Will Microsoft port everything over to their stuff? Well - eventually, but it sounds like they have their heads on straight when it comes to timelines. Microsoft is perfectly willing to run open source stuff for a time so they can focus their efforts on services that will be more immediately apparent to the end user. Good call.

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