Yahoo’s mobile app update almost deserves the exclamation point.

Posted: October 15, 2010 in apps, iphone, social networking
Tags: , , , , , ,

Yahoo! recently updated their iPhone/iPod messaging app adding in video calling amongst other things and I have to say so far i’m impressed, maybe not enough to say yahoo!, but definitely a woohoo update.

I’m not sure if the latest update works for iPads since a) i don’t have one yet and 2) the Yahoo website nor the appstore mention it in their write-ups.  If any of my faithful readers would give it a try and let me know that would be great, thanks.  Or if someone wants to send me an iPad so I can try it out, that works just fine too.
I don’t use yahoo messenger a lot – on either my computer or mobile device –  but there are some friends of mine who are still holdouts and don’t like gtalk, or don’t want to SMS, or maybe they just like the cutesy little emoticons that seem to display best in Y!Messenger, whatever the reason Yahoo is their way of staying connected and this latest update will help them do just that when using their “idevices“.

old yahoo for iphone

new yahoo for iphone

It’s always been a pretty good messenger and has had voice and video capability for a while in the PC version, but now they’ve added both into the mobile version as well.

Multi-tasking seems to work better now too, and the background notifications are a good thing, unless of course you forget to close the app and merely minimize it by accident those little “dings” can be annoying.  I’m speaking from experience here – sometimes I wish there was an exit button in the apps, but that is a problem with most apps and not specific to Yahoo!.  There are times I want to just close an app and not have it automatically go to the background for multi-tasking which makes quitting any app a two step process.

Getting back to this specific app though, the changes are minimal to the user interface, but huge to the actual usage.  The menu bar at the bottom got another icon “Call“, and for whatever reason they changed the icon for Contacts from a single head & shoulders symbol to multiple.  If they add any more features that menu bar is going to have to be rethunk since its about as small as you’d want to get and still remain legible.

new top toolbar

video call screen

As for the video calling, I was a little confused by the statement in their disclaimer “For the optimal experience, an iPhone 3GS or iPhone 4.0, iOS 4.1 & WiFi is recommended”  – Huh?  So are you supposed to keep turning your iPhone 3GS around to use the camera since its on the back and the video screen you are trying to watch is on the front?  I guess its still a video call, but not a person to person one – sort of a whatever-my-camera-is-pointed-at kinda call.

With an iPhone4 you have the option of switching between front and back cameras, as well as muting the audio (so no one hear’s you screaming at your kids to be quiet while you are on the phone) all without the limitation of having to be within WiFi range like Apple’s FaceTime requires.

All in all, if your already a user of the mobile messenger app, this is a welcome update and if you haven’t used Yahoo! Messenger before and have an iPhone4 this app may be just what you are looking for to connect with friends via video and not be limited to just connecting with other iPhone/iPod touch users via WiFi.

Go check it out, you can grab it here .

Btw, thanks to a couple of my yahoo contacts for their help during my testing, unbeknownst to them at the time.

tcg

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Comments
  1. roclafamilia says:

    Helpful blog, bookmarked the website with hopes to read more!

    Like

  2. aparadekto says:

    Hey, I can’t view your site properly within Opera, I actually hope you look into fixing this.

    Like

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