Friday, September 23rd, 2005

Yahoo! Mail Beta Review

Category: Editorial

We all know about the Yahoo! Mail Beta. My friends over at Internet Stock Blog reported that The New Yahoo Mail is Far Superior to Gmail according to WSJ personal technology columnist Walter Mossberg.

I got an invite to the Yahoo! Mail beta myself and took it for a test drive.

There is a tough balance when moving rich applications to the web. I think that we are very early in the process of finding our feet there, and GMail was interesting to me as it felt “webbish”.

The latest Yahoo! Mail feels like Outlook, and often that doesn’t make sense for a lot of the Ajax applications.

However, for something like email, maybe it DOES make sense. This is an application that you will want to spend a lot of time in. Every day. You will be willing to learn the menus more, etc.

The main points for me are:

  • Rich and beautiful: This interface is impressively clean. They have done a fantastic job there. I love the color, I love the mouseovers. I love it.
  • Tabs: I have liked tabbed browsing, so it is interesting that you get tabbed email. I think this is especially nice as we all hate popups, so this gets around that issue (although there are still enough popups that you will want to train your blocker to allow them for this site).
  • Folders: You are back in folder mode still. Folders don’t work for me. They break down, as I need more dimensions to be able to sort and visualise my email. I hope that they add power-user support, allowing me to put any kind of metadata on my email.
  • Calendar: I love this interface so much, I want the calendar to be like this. And, I want it to be exported as a .ics. And, I want to be able to point it to any .ics file out there. I admit I want a lot.
  • Performance: The interface is very fast and slick for me. Impressively so, considering that a lot of JavaScript must be running behind the scenes. This shows you what can be done. Doing things like creating, renaming, and nuking directories happen instantly.

Basic

yahoo-mail-beta-dion.png

Tabs

yahoo-mail-beta-dion2.png

Conclusion

A great start. Hopefully soon the other features will come in and we will marry a top quality interface with some power user features!

updated by Rob 12/7/05: Comments are now closed for this post. We do not have invites for Yahoo Mail, don’t bother asking.

Posted by Dion Almaer at 3:30 pm
9 Comments

++---
2.8 rating from 10 votes

9 Comments

How does it work in Firefox?
Any insights on the FF experience?
Safari, Camino, Opera?
We’d looooooooove to play with it NOW !

Comment by FFLover — September 23, 2005

Btw, let them know to remove the ‘reply to sender/reply to all’ menu. Useless.
Another button will suffice, and have it disabled if no more than one sender/CC.

Great job!

Comment by FFLover — September 23, 2005

According to the nag screen that popped up just now when I tried Opera, supported browsers are Internet Explorer 5.5 or higher (for Windows), Firefox 1.0 or higher (for Mac and Windows), Mozilla 1.7 or higher (for Mac and Windows), and Netscape 7.2 (for Windows).

Comment by Kent Brewster — September 24, 2005

Seems it just Oddpost.com webmail, moved to Yahoo?

Comment by Andrey — September 24, 2005

the calendar is the same it always has been, and desperately needs updating. the calendar has not changed in this mail beta from what calendar.yahoo.com offers.

Comment by grumpY! — September 24, 2005

Hmm….this looks interesting. I’m gonna start working on some Ajax apps soon….will wanna take a look at this.

Cheers.

Comment by Avinash P — September 24, 2005

Andrey: Yahoo bought Oddpost a while back. Some of the screenshots with dialogs shows the Oddpost grey.

Comment by Erik Arvidsson — September 25, 2005

Does yahoo new mail load java scripts or applets the same way as gmail does,then its gonna be slow on say dial-up connections,look out dialups

Comment by sanrock — September 28, 2005

Does it still add promotional taglines to the end of every outgoing e-mail?

Comment by stanley — October 1, 2005

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.