New Yahoo Go = So What?

I read several announcements today about the new Yahoo Go service. After searching endlessly for an actual URL that linked to the offering, I finally found one. I’m sure I won’t be the first or last to say that the offering should have been called ‘Yahoo No Go’. The computer portion of it is not currently available and will be PC only, the ‘TV’ portion of it is also a PC app (and also not available). Ah, the mobile portion is available for Nokia series 60 phones — I’m in luck, I have a Nokia 6620 that fits the bill.

I download the ~1.7MB app and install in on my 6620 with great interest after having seen the screen shots and read the hyperbole from the CES announcement. The ygo.sis file expands to take nearly 4MB of phone and memory card space, then goes on to download another app for connections. After the initialization, I try out the apps. One by one, I grew less and less impressed. Yahoo Go, it turns out, is just 4MB of bloat that does nothing more than start the WAP browser on the phone (which wants you to login to Yahoo again!) to display the services that are already available to you through the Yahoo mobile site. Accessing the Yahoo mobile site directly using the Opera series 60 browser provides a much better user experience that this. What a total crock. Hell, Cingular’s J2ME IM application kicks the crap out of this thing (even as a single tasker). Google’s J2ME Maps implementation makes Yahoo’s effort look like the brown stuff in the bottom of a college dorm fridge.

I then went about removing this craplet from my phone, but, guess, what? As part of the removal process, it wants to ‘phone home’ to Yahoo and waste more bandwidth before it will remove itself (shades of Microsoft). It’s no wonder that Yahoo recommends that you allow the app to connect whenever it wants to (versus letting you know that it want to make a connection). I finally had to go into the Nokia AppManager and delete the various pieces of it manually.

Based on this experience, Yawnhoo needs to try harder and put out something useful (other than hype).

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