Yahoo! vows to fight Microsoft on new front

Aug 25, 2009
Pedestrians walk by a Yahoo! sign in Times Square in New York City. Yahoo! on Monday vowed to fight Microsoft on a new frontier, saying that having the software giant power its online searches won't stop it from battling for the devotion of Web surfers.

Yahoo! on Monday vowed to fight Microsoft on a new frontier, saying that having the software giant power its online searches won't stop it from battling for the devotion of Web surfers.

Yahoo! executives declared that the pioneering firm's campaign to wrest market share from and Google isn't ending, it is only shifting fronts.

!'s deal with Microsoft, if cleared by regulators, will result in the California firm using Microsoft's freshly launched Bing search engine to mine the Internet for results to queries at Yahoo! pages.

Yahoo! said it is refining its pages to present search results in smarter, more intuitive ways that will trump what Microsoft presents with Bing alone.

"The back-end of search is a megawatt war, and that is what we are getting out of," said Prabhakar Raghaven, Yahoo! labs and search strategy senior vice president.

"We believe the battle has move beyond the back end; we want to fight the battle on the other end."

Yahoo! stressed its commitment to search while unveiling improvements to its globally popular free Web-based email and instant messaging services to reporters at its headquarters in Sunnyvale, California.

Yahoo! also provided a glimpse at a new search page design it plans to roll out later this year.

"We are committed to continuing to invest in search," said Yahoo! vice president of search products and design Larry Cornett.

"This design is going to transform the way you use the Web; make it easier and faster for you to find the things that matter most to you."

New search design features include using previous queries to automatically figure out what people are seeking and narrowing results so relevant videos or Web pages are presented instead of simply links to Websites.

Searching people's names on the Yahoo! pages being tested triggers results including their pages at social-networking websites such as or microblogging sensation Twitter.

"Searching for people has been Google's domain; we are going to take that away from them," Cornett said. "When we launch this, you are going to come to Yahoo! to search for people. This is a very different search experience."

Google is the overwhelming leader in a Web search and advertising market which the research firm Forrester estimates will grow by 15 percent a year to more than 30 billion dollars in 2014 in the United States alone.

With their tie-up announced in July, Microsoft and Yahoo! are hoping to steal -- and advertising dollars -- from Google.

Under the terms of the agreement, Yahoo! will use the Bing search engine and handle Web ad sales.

"Basically, Microsoft bought their back-end," said analyst Rob Enderle of Enderle Group in Silicon Valley.

"Now, Yahoo! has all this money free and they are going to put it in the front-end to differentiate themselves from and Microsoft. It is an interesting strategy."

Yahoo! is in a position to springboard off improvements made to Bing without having to share its innovations with Microsoft, according to the analyst.

"It almost always insures that Yahoo! technology will be better," Enderle said.

Yahoo! also doesn't have to share the mountains of search data it uses to refine search results.

Yahoo! on Monday debuted enhancements to its free Web-based email, the most popular service of its kind with a reported 300 million users worldwide.

Yahoo! Mail is adding social-networking-style status updates and making it simple to find, edit, and send pictures buried in inboxes.

The size limit for files attached to emails was more than doubled to 25 megabytes.

Yahoo! is also launching new Mail software for smart phones, starting with Apple's wildly popular iPhones.

"Yahoo!'s goal is to be the center of people's lives online," said Tapan Bhat, senior vice president of integrated consumer experiences at Yahoo!.

"We don't believe social is a destination; we think it is a fabric woven into everything we do."

(c) 2009 AFP

Explore further: Google Trends info is placed on inbox duty for subscribers

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Google users loyal: comScore

Aug 15, 2009

The planned Microsoft-Yahoo! online search tie-up has promise but must overcome people's fierce loyalty to market king Google, industry tracker comScore said Friday.

Yahoo searching for ways to show fewer Web links

May 20, 2009

(AP) -- Yahoo Inc. is pruning Web links from its Internet search results as it strives to provide more immediate gratification and lure traffic away from the market leader, Google Inc.

Microsoft adds selected 'tweets' to Bing

Jul 02, 2009

Microsoft is integrating messages from prominent users of Twitter, the hot micro-blogging service, into the results generated by its new Internet search engine Bing.

Bing luring Internet searchers: comScore

Jun 09, 2009

Microsoft's new Internet search engine Bing boosted the software giant's share of the US market in the week following its release, industry tracking firm comScore reported Tuesday.

Recommended for you

LinkedIn membership hits 300 million

Apr 18, 2014

The career-focused social network LinkedIn announced Friday it has 300 million members, with more than half the total outside the United States.

Researchers uncover likely creator of Bitcoin

Apr 18, 2014

The primary author of the celebrated Bitcoin paper, and therefore probable creator of Bitcoin, is most likely Nick Szabo, a blogger and former George Washington University law professor, according to students ...

White House updating online privacy policy

Apr 18, 2014

A new Obama administration privacy policy out Friday explains how the government will gather the user data of online visitors to, mobile apps and social media sites. It also clarifies that ...

User comments : 0

More news stories

Ex-Apple chief plans mobile phone for India

Former Apple chief executive John Sculley, whose marketing skills helped bring the personal computer to desktops worldwide, says he plans to launch a mobile phone in India to exploit its still largely untapped ...

A homemade solar lamp for developing countries

( —The solar lamp developed by the start-up LEDsafari is a more effective, safer, and less expensive form of illumination than the traditional oil lamp currently used by more than one billion people ...

UAE reports 12 new cases of MERS

Health authorities in the United Arab Emirates have announced 12 new cases of infection by the MERS coronavirus, but insisted the patients would be cured within two weeks.

NASA's space station Robonaut finally getting legs

Robonaut, the first out-of-this-world humanoid, is finally getting its space legs. For three years, Robonaut has had to manage from the waist up. This new pair of legs means the experimental robot—now stuck ...