Yahoo Messenger Goes Social
Yahoo said today that it is adding new features to its instant messaging service.
Yahoo Messenger 9.0 in beta has added features that make the service more social in nature.
There is now extra room to post a picture or other image next to contact names and users can share video or photos in the message screen.
Users can also forward messages to their mobile phones when they are away from their computers.
Sabrina Ellis, vice president of Yahoo Messenger commented on the new social features saying, "In some ways, if you look at it Yahoo Messenger is a social network in that people have actually defined who their friends are and these are people they communicate with," she told IDG News.
Yahoo Messenger also offers localized languages in six new markets including the Philippines, Indonesia, Malaysia, Thailand, India (in Hindi), and Vietnam bringing the total number of global markets to 25.
"We've punched up Yahoo! Messenger to make keeping in touch with friends and family even more fun, with features like the in-line media player that helps people easily share their favourite videos, images and photos right in the IM window," said Naomi Lipowski, head of communications products, Yahoo! Canada.
"Redesigned from the ground-up, Yahoo! Messenger puts friends front and center by giving people the choice to stay connected wherever their friends are using IM, voice, or SMS."
Last month Yahoo Messenger had 94. 3 million unique users, an increase of almost 30 percent from September 2006 and second globally to Microsoft's Windows Live Messenger with 227 million users according to comScore.
On the overall integration of social features into Yahoo Messenger Ellis said, " This makes it easier fro people to stay connected and grow their friendships. We added several personalization features. We think a lot of the media- sharing will really help."
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