Yahoo Mail's New Built-In Instant Messaging

The new Yahoo Mail remains one of the slickest Web 2.0 apps there is; wonder when it'll go completely mainstream?

I'm back for the last day of the Web 2.0 Summit, and one of the first sessions this morning spotlights Yahoo. Yahoo Mail, specifically--which the company says has 250 million active users, making it one of the most populous communities on the planet.

They're demoing a new feature in the beta version of the next-generation Yahoo Mail: built-in instant messaging. When in Yahoo Mail, you can see if people in your address book are online and logged into a Yahoo communications service; if they are, you can chat switch to an IM chat in Yahoo Mail and begin talking in real time. (I think--the demo is intriguing but somewhat confusing.)

Which reminds me: The new Yahoo Mail has been in beta for well over a year, and as far as I know, it's still not the default interface. It remains one of the slickest Web 2.0 applications there is; wonder when it'll go completely mainstream?

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Harry McCracken

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