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Monday, January 07, 2008 

Yahoo! Go 3.0 Beta: Relaunch with Mobile Widget Platform

Yahoo Go, the mobile portal, is undergoing some major changes, resulting in what can only be called a relaunch to some degree. The service is currently down, as Yahoo works on getting the new mobile portal ready for the official launch tomorrow. Entitled Yahoo Go 3.0 Beta, the new features will include the obligatory new UI, which has been optimized for the mobile phone.

But the big announcement for Yahoo Go is the inclusion of Mobile Widget Platform, granting access to third-party widgets. These widgets will be accessible on both Yahoo Go and the regular Yahoo mobile page. So far, widget partners include eBay, MySpace and MTV. The mobile widget platform has also been opened up for developers who would like to create mobile widgets as well. The full-feature SDK for developers will be available in the next few weeks, and I’m rather anxious to see how developers will utilize the new mobile widget platform.

yahoo-go.pngYahoo does seem to be among the first of the major companies to come with third-party mobile widgets to this extent. Several mobile companies have adopted the heavy promotion of mobile widgets, including Nokia, for mobile portals because of their ability to package together a set of features in an easy access format.

Other new features include personal vitality and status updates, which gives you an at-a-glance view of what you missed: how many new emails do you have, how many Flickr photos have your friends added, what upcoming appointments are on your calendar, etc. The content for your mobile modules is also customizable, so you can choose what snippets (weather, news, etc.) you’d like on your home page.

The move to enhance the mobile start page, especially with the addition of mobile widgets, gives Yahoo a compelling usage of its mobile network, and a strike against other mobile startups hoping to gain traction from similar models for delivering content. Will the leveraging of your existing Yahoo content, such as email and friend updates, be a deciding factor for you, or do you avoid the mobile portal format all together?

The other interesting thing about Yahoo Go 3.0 Beta is the inclusion of interactive mobile ads, which will give you the option of calling businesses directly from the ads. This is similar to a format that AdMob has tried out with a region-specific advertising campaign with LandRover, which was also specific to iPhone users. This should be another interesting aspect to follow, as more mobile tools for search are launched (Ask.com, ChaCha), which advertisers will be more able to take advantage of as well.

source: http://mashable.com/2008/01/06/yahoo-go-30-beta/

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Pedro "K2" Macêdo

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