Yahoo! Mobile

july 6, 2005

Russell Beattie has an interesting post over at the Yahoo! Search blog about the new features being released by the Yahoo! Search group. I guess it is better late than never for these features. Yahoo! Search groups has released search-by-SMS functionality, which has been available at Google for a while now. I am glad that we have the technology, but I am personally not a fan of search-by-SMS because it is not the best way of getting information on a phone -- when I tried Google's version, I would send one SMS with a query then receive three SMS messages back with information (remember, SMS messages have a length limitation of about 160 characters). Not something that I really want to do when I am on a 300 SMS messages plan with each additional SMS message costing me a fat nickel. Rather, the other new Yahoo! Search functionality, the ability to translate HTML to WML, is more useful. I found that when I was using my old phones with only a WAP browse, the HTML-to-WML translation that the Google search engine did helped a lot. Though, it was not the greatest thing either since I found that a simple page that had a column of ads on the side and a navbar at the top would result in 20 pages of hitting "next page" and then finally getting the meat of the page. I don't have a WAP phone to play with right now since I switched over to a Treo 600, but maybe I'll steal my wife's Samsung E315 over the weekend and give the Yahoo! version of HTML-to-WML a shot. To the Yahoo! Search and Mobile team: Great work on getting this stuff implemented, now lets see some cool new features that will make those Google guys work hard to try to implement on their side!