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Yahoo personalizes new homepageYahoo Inc.
launched a redesign of its popular Internet home page at www.yahoo.com, displaying a more prominent section for Web searches and reconfiguring its display menu. Like Google and Microsoft, Yahoo is introducing clickable tools to let users customize what they see. Alongside the search box will be an assistant that tells people if new messages are in their Yahoo e-mail inbox, a section for popular searches and an expanded news section. In making the changes, Yahoo is the last of the big three search firms to re-focus its main web presence on what users want to do. There will be a variety of new and enhanced features, including:
- Yahoo! Pulse: People can instantly discover what's hot on the Web in this unique new section of the home page - including the most popular and interesting Yahoo! searches, as well as the latest trends, music, videos, photos, people and opinions. Yahoo! Pulse highlights what the estimated half a billion monthly users of Yahoo! branded services are looking for, reading, viewing, listening to, rating or sharing online.
- Expanded Content: Thought-provoking feature stories, fresh entertainment, sports and finance content, as well as more of the latest national, world and video news are all hand-picked and updated by Yahoo!'s home page editors.
- Enhanced Search Box: The newly designed and positioned Yahoo! Search box offers consumers a more prominent gateway to the Web, news, multimedia content, local information, shopping and Yahoo!'s directory to help them find exactly what they want quickly. Additionally, home page visitors can leverage the collective knowledge and experience of real people by accessing Yahoo! Answers just beneath the Yahoo! Search box.
- Simple Navigation: Buttons near the top of the page link to Yahoo!'s other popular starting points, My Yahoo! and Yahoo! Mail. Other frequently used Yahoo! products and services are easy to find in a simple column of links, and new content tabs deliver more of the day's important news right on the home page.
- More Control: Colors are easily tailored to fit a person's preferences with only a click of the mouse. Complementing My Yahoo!, the most popular personalized start page, the new yahoo.com gives consumers a home page that is immediately more useful and relevant for them.
The new Yahoo! home page is available as a beta, or test, version for the next month to assess how users repond to the alterations in the United States at www.yahoo.com/preview, with local preview versions in the UK and Ireland, France, Germany, Italy and Spain. More enhancements to the page will be added over the coming months, and it will be made generally available in all global markets later this summer. The new look pages aim to move away from the old-fashioned static site where people were simply presented with a page listing everything a web portal did. Users will now be able to customise what they see, remove the bits they never look at and add those others parts of the Yahoo empire that they regularly use. They will also be able to change the layout and the colour of the page. The driving force behind these acquisitions has been the desire to get hold of ready-made communities to sell to. - Internet war between China and US
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Google has unveiled a new wave of software and desktop gadgetry in its ongoing quest to dominate users' experience of the internet. The world's most popular search engine, which faces mounting competition from rivals Microsoft
, showcased innovations while pledging to focus renewed energies on its core business of online search technology. At a meeting with reporters
from around the globe, Google
introduced several new search enhancements, including a way to subscribe to health research from experts and tools that let people save portions of websites in a pop-up box that can be shared via e-mails. Google's share of online searches rose to 42.7% in March from 36.4% a year ago. Yahoo's and MSN's shares fell, says research firm ComScore Media Metrix
says 98% of what will exist in 10 years "has yet to be done, and we won't get there by looking at what other companies are doing." The new tools are:
- Google Co-op. Users can sign up at www.google.com/coop/directory to subscribe to free health information from several organizations, including the federal Centers for Disease Control, the Mayo Clinic and Kaiser Permanente. Their tips on the best health data will show up in search results. Google Co-op also offers city guide information for more than 300 cities, including London and New York. Co-op is designed to let organizations label Web pages relevant to their areas of expertise.
"We're going to take the Tom Sawyer view and see how our users paint the fence"
- Google Desktop 4An extension of Google's tool to search for items on your computer now comes with more than 100 "Gadgets" — little widgets that do things such as list friends' birthdays, show videos and play music.
- Google Trends. Lets users examine searches for market trends. For example, a search for "surfers" will show that most searches come from Hawaii and Australia and link to news stories about surfing. "For the first time ever, Google is making it possible to sift through billions of search queries from around the world to see what people are thinking about," said Mayer. Trends is targeted primarily toward marketers.
- Google Notebook lets people save a portion of a website to a box that can be shared with others. Google showed an example of shopping for shoes, saving a certain pair and writing a note about it, then sending it to friends. The tool works in conjunction with Desktop 4.
Executives denied the new products, especially an upgraded Google Desktop with a multi-media player, were a challenge to the dominance of Microsoft's Windows operating system. Eric Schmidt
said he saw "no limit" to the company's growth, adding that Google would devote 70% of its resources to search technologies during the next 50 years. Elliot Schrage
said Google's goal is more transparency and to be more open about what Google is doing and what not.Google Strengthens Focus on Search with Four New Tools
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Yahoo! Turns To TechYahoo!
took another step aimed at turning itself into a one-stop information hub Monday by launching a new site focused on consumer
technology and gadgets. Yahoo Inc. unveiled a shopping site for gadgets laced with plain-English advice by experts and user-contributed reviews, entering a market long dominated by tech-focused media firm CNet Networks Inc.. Yahoo! Tech
marks the latest move by the world's biggest Internet media company to reinvigorate or expand into areas such as travel, finance, automobiles, and now technology. Yahoo! Tech
is set to offer hundreds of thousands of products with user product ratings and reviews through its Yahoo Shopping site, as well as question-and-answer guides and community features that exist within the wider Yahoo realm. The site aims to set itself apart from gadget enthusiast sites by focusing on how to make technology easier to understand, the executive-in-charge said.
"What we are trying to do is to make it simple to choose and use the technology that is easiest to use. We built Yahoo! Tech for people who might not have the time nor inclination to learn about bits and bytes."
The advice site draws upon familiar Yahoo tools. It is designed to serve as the anchor across the Internet media giant's network of sites for technology advertising, a lucrative category that is among the most popular online markets for advertisers. Already, big ad spenders Hewlett Packard, Verizon Wireless and Panasonic have signed up. Yahoo! Tech is focusing on the U.S. market and there are no plans to expand into other countries, Houston said. Yahoo also plans to embed original video programming it is producing throughout the site. - Yahoo Introduces a Site on Consumer Technology
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