Yahoo Reveals Spanking New Features in its Mail Service

Yahoo Web mail users will be able to filter messages according to relationships, keep up to date on friends' Web activities, and use add-on utilities from third-party developers.


Yahoo Web mail users will be able to filter messages according to relationships, keep up to date on friends' Web activities, and use add-on utilities from third-party developers. It's all part of what Yahoo calls a "smarter in-box" experience. Future developments could yield tighter integration with social networking centers like Facebook and MySpace.

As part of its ongoing Yahoo Open Strategy initiative, Yahoo has launched an enhanced version of its Mail service. The changes to Yahoo Mail offer users a "smarter in-box" experience that the company said it will roll out gradually to its users during the coming months.

With the change expanding across all regions, Yahoo Mail users will find a new "Welcome Page" that will include messages, information and activity updates from people users have identified as important as well as an updated in-box and folder view that filters messages from personal connections.

The smarter in-box will be rolled out to users globally in a phased manner. Users in the U.S. and Australia will be amongst the first to notice the changes. Yahoo expects the move to provide a boost for its open and social efforts in its consumer-related products and services. As the service matures, users will also have access to third-party applications also designed to provide an enhanced e-mail experience.

The smarter in-box will break through the e-mail clutter to make sure e-mails from friends and family come first. It will also bring applications from across the Web into the smarter in-box, which will help people be more productive from the convenience of their in-box.

Users will be able to connect with others using Yahoo's universal profile service and designate the people whose messages and activity updates are of greatest importance to them. Once that has been completed, users will see a prioritized view of their in-box and folders based on their connections. The filtered content will also be available on the new "Welcome Page" as previews of messages.

Users will be offered connection suggestions from Yahoo and have the ability to send and receive invites for new connections. They will also find an activity update feed which keeps them filled in on what their connections have been up to across Yahoo. The company hopes to expand this in the future to include activities across the Web.


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