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Yahoo Takes New Messenger Out Of Beta, Releases Version 6

Staff Writer
Published: 2004-05-25

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Monday, May 24, 2004 saw the beta testing period end for Yahoo's newest version of its instant messenger. The new version, 6.0, features a great many bells and whistles in order to improve the quality of IM sessions. The messenger breaks its features down into 4 categories: entertainment, personalization, productivity, and communication.

All of the above categories feature loads of options in an effort to make Yahoo's messenger the best available. Some of the features include: LAUNCHcast Radio; Yahoo Games; avatars with ability to display your own picture; Audibles, which are sound enabled avatars; the ability to change the look and feel of your messenger, plus many more.
These features highlight the level of personalization that Yahoo has included into this newest version. However, the changes that make Yahoo's messenger more functional are where the true value of the utility comes out.

The most notable inclusion to the search engine world is the ability to search from the messenger window. With this you can "Search directly from an instant message window. Type s: [search term] to display Yahoo! Search results in a conversation."

Having the ability to search and display the results in the messenger window makes Yahoo's instant messenger offering one of the most complete Internet communication packages available. Because of the competition that Yahoo and Google are involved is so hotly contested, any move that makes a functional search utility that is not browser restricted has to be considered a victorious one.

Considering the fact that Google is inching closer and closer to the dreaded portal designation (Gmail and Google Groups) can a Google messenger that offers search be too far behind? Of course, Google has the Google Deskbar to look forward too. There's no telling what kind of ripple effect that will have.

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