Internet, News, Technology

Yahoo discontinues older mail versions, new upgrade targets to lure advertisers

Its time for Yahoo users to say goodbye to old Yahoo mail versions. Starting today, from June 3rd older versions of Yahoo mail including Yahoo!Mail Classic will not be available to use.

On switching to the new upgraded version, users will give acceptance to Yahoo’s TOS and Privacy policies which allows it to scan user’s emails and account, in order to deliver product features, relevant advertising and abuse protection. This leaves Users with two options, either upgrade the account and allow Yahoo to read all the mails or switch to another IMAP client and close the account.

Yahoo launched its new mail version back in December 2011, but at the time no such mention of TOS and Privacy policy was done, as clearly visible in the blog post by Marissa Mayer. Seems yahoo quietly rolled the new version and let users use it for say 6 months, without any hint of this email scanning policy.

Even in April when Yahoo announced a change in strategy for targeting mobile users by shutting down its age old services such as Upcoming, Yahoo! Deals, Yahoo! SMS Alerts, Yahoo! Kids, Yahoo! Mail and Messenger feature phone (J2ME) apps and Older versions of Yahoo! Mail, it did not mention any automated acceptance of Communication TOS and Privacy Policies by users who opt for the newer version of the mail. However in late April, Yahoo revealed the new policies when it started sending out  emails  with the subject line “Yahoo! is upgrading: What it means for you.” to its classic users regarding the switch.

An entry in Yahoo help section which reads as “ Do I have to upgrade to the new Yahoo! Mail ?” and which was last updated on May 17th 2013 explains the whole Scenario. Users who do not wish to receive targeted ads (as a result of Scanning ) can opt out using Ad Interest Manager.  For premium members using Yahoo’s previous version of mail it will offer prorated return for unused portion if users do not wish to continue their subscription.

Yahoo which is still 3rd largest web based email service has 281 million users as of Dec 2012. Along with Unlimited Storage facility which was launched back in 2007 and up to 25 GB upload limit, new version of Yahoo displays a changed UI with easy navigation and search. New version is designed to work seamlessly on Windows 8 , iPhone & iPod touch , Android and web giving users a unifying experience. The upgrade brings messages to front and centre which are more easily accessible along with improved speed.

New features with improved user experience will surely help Yahoo to retain its old users along with acquiring new ones which otherwise are opting out for other email clients. Also mobile upgrades will add to more user chunk for Yahoo as accessing emails through mobile is increasing faster than ever.

After serial acquisitions aimed to re-establish Yahoo as a premium platform for advertisers, this forced upgrade will surely lure advertisers as now getting user’s analytics will be more real time. Also Yahoo’s desperate move to be the part of everyone’s daily life and routine seems to get more than fulfilled.

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