Yahoo's new email: A step in the right d

December 12 [Wed], 2012, 11:00

The struggling internet company rolls out its first product upgrade under new CEO Marissa Mayer

In her first major move since taking the helm at Yahoo in July, CEO Marissa Mayer on Tuesdayan upgrade to Yahoo Mail, the once-ubiquitous email service that has since beenin popularity by Google's Gmail. In aon Yahoo's blog, Mayer said the faster and cleaner interface would be available on all platforms, including the iPhone and Android:

You've told us loud and clear that you want fewer distractions when it comes to email. You want to quickly login, communicate, and get on with your day. And we've listened. Starting today, the new Yahoo! Mail is fast, easy and available anywhere you go.

Keeping users on Yahoo Mail is critical for the struggling company, which has been losing the battle for advertising dollars as its popularity dwindles. Email services are a perfect vehicle for advertisers, since they're "as close to personal delivery as you can get," . Furthermore, Yahoo Mail offers users "links to Yahoo content pages with expensive brand advertising on them,"

But it will be an uphill climb. While Yahoo Mail is the most popular webmail service, , the only major email service that has gained users (and a lot of them) in the past year has been Gmail. In addition, while Mayer has prioritized creating a "coherent mobile strategy," Yahoo in the past has "failed to keep up with rivals when it comes to integrating innovative mobile and social media features," . Analystsmaking Yahoo Mail consistent across all platforms is an important and necessary step in that direction. But the true test for Yahoo is if users will continue to use its products as they increasingly turn to smartphones as their principal method of accessing the internet.

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