John Paczkowski

Recent Posts by John Paczkowski

Yahoo Tweaks Homepages for Web and Mobile

Yahoo (YHOO) announced some updates to its homepages today–mobile and Web both. Designed to make them more personally relevant to their users, the pages are more customizable than they’ve been before. The release in full after screenshot (click to enlarge):

metro-ss_may-2009

Making New Yahoo! Homepages Your Own
 
We recognize that for many of you around the world, the Yahoo! homepage — whether you’re seeing it on a computer or a mobile device – is Yahoo!. And we know you all have vastly different interests and “must-see” places you navigate to online. We can make our homepage better reflect this reality and, as many of you know, we’ve been hard at work on improving both our mobile and Web homepages.
 
What’s new, you ask?
We recently made the new Yahoo! Mobile (http://m.yahoo.com) available on the mobile Web across more than 300 devices and as an Apple iPhone app — both are available in eight countries, with more launching soon. We’ve moved out of beta and are in the process of rolling it out as our default mobile homepage.
 
Like the PC homepage we’re testing, Yahoo! Mobile has a more feature-rich design, letting you bring together your favorite content and services from across the Web, making it more personally relevant. For example, my experience is customized with my Yahoo! Mail, Facebook, Twitter and Yahoo! Messenger accounts, as well as my various stocks, favorite blog feeds, and weather from my favorite cities. The beauty of it is that you can customize the experience to exactly what you want and add anything to the page.
 
As for the Web, we recently started testing some new designs based on your feedback. We recognize that many of you like your homepage just the way it is, thank-you-very-much, so the overall look and feel of the page will be familiar. But take a closer look, and you’ll see that we’ve made some fundamental improvements and packed in features that are easy to use and easy to make your own — things you have told us you want.
 
The “My Favorites” area on the left side of the page includes an applications “dashboard” with the ability to preview, interact with or navigate to your favorite sites — whether they’re on Yahoo! or elsewhere on the Web. It’s all fully customizable.
 
Here’s some of what’s new and cool:

  • Lots more apps: We’re testing a growing library of apps that let you get more done without leaving the page. Some of these apps include eBay and MySpace, and content sites like USA Today and NPR. We also have newly developed apps for popular Yahoo! services like Messenger, Movies and Flickr.
  • Social pulse: A new Yahoo! Updates app lets you keep up with your friends’ online activities directly on the homepage — such as a recently Buzzed article or a video uploaded to YouTube.
  • Easier email: We’ve separated your individual email accounts as distinct apps, rather than a combined inbox, so that it’s faster and easier to get to the exact mail you want. This was a request we heard repeatedly during testing.

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Another gadget you don’t really need. Will not work once you get it home. New model out in 4 weeks. Battery life is too short to be of any use.

— From the fact sheet for a fake product entitled Useless Plasticbox 1.2 (an actual empty plastic box) placed in L.A.-area Best Buy stores by an artist called Plastic Jesus