Yahoo unveils new phone, apps for emerging Asia

Yahoo unveils new phone, apps for emerging Asia

Bill Mumford  |   June 15, 2010
CommunciAsia Show Daily

Yahoo has unveiled a new messaging app and a phone with bundled Yahoo access aimed at mobile internet adopters in emerging markets.

The Alcatel One Touch phone, which will provide direct access to Yahoo content through a single button, will be launched in Indonesia today, with other Asian markets to follow.

The US internet firm will also unveil its new apps bundle, Messenger One, along with APIs.

Irv Henderson, vice president of mobile & local product development, said Messenger One was aimed at "new to the net users," offering mobile registration, a unified inbox covering email, IM and SMS, and a searchable archive.

He said operators would be able to charge a "small premium" for access to the Messenger One apps, but Yahoo did not yet have plans to monetize the product, he said.

At this time "we are very interested in increasing the user base and making sure all the users in this market can use our services."

He said emerging mobile markets were "crucial" for Yahoo, whose internet ad display business is primarily focused on PC users.

Yahoo last month announced a global partnership with Nokia, also focused on emerging markets, and the acquisition of Indonesian location-based social networks firm Koprol.

Henderson said the opening of the APIs was targeted initially at Indonesian developers, intended to "drive innovation" on the messaging platform.

The Alcatel phone was developed by TCT Mobile, a unit of listed Chinese handset firm TCL Communications.

Bill Mumford

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