Yahoo! Product Suggestions

    October 30, 2007

I’ve taken some time over the last few weeks to pay attention to different Yahoo! services. In addition to being an employee I’m a huge Y! service lover, from Upcoming to, from Music to Widgets, they’ve really built/bought some great products.

I thought it would be fun to walk through a few of their products and give them my ‘How I’d Improve This Product’ dealio, so here goes.

1. Mail

Make it Zimbra ;)

2. Calendar

Make it Google Cal… Nah, just kidding, but the functionality of Google Cal should be their aim. At present it doesn’t seem like the Y! Calendar is getting much product attention, since it is far from something I’d use. I’d suggest, off the top of my head:

1. Making it sync via iCal. Right now when you click sync it tries to sync your mail from other services and that’s retarded.

2. Adding in contexts (always fun to go all GTD).

3. Allowing imports from other services. Lower the barrier to entry.

4. Ajax. Otherwise, it’s useless.

5. Photos. Why are they asking you if you want to add photos to your calendar? Who the heck does that?

6. Connected Devices… What is this supposed to do? When I click it I get an error message that it’s unavailable.

3. Yahoo Music

As a moron who has a Mac as my primary computer and a Zune as my primary listening device (I know…), no music service is going to completely please me. That said, they’ve done a huge overhaul and the result is a much cleaner and cooler look, incorporating Upcoming and other cool stuff (where’s MyBlogLog?), but if they want me to be able to use them, Y! Music really should:

1. Be compatible with a Mac. I mean I have a PC too, but it would be cool to be able to use the service on my Mac as well. I get a message that I should ‘upgrade’ to Vista or XP, LOL. Upgrade? Not even close…

2. Make Zune one of their devices. I pay Microsoft $15 per month for the privilege of using and I’d rather use Yahoo!, especially at $6-8 per month, and I don’t have that option right now, although apparently I can use my phone. What is up with that?

3. Make the call to action a little more noticeable. I just spent 5 minutes trying to figure out how to download the client, before I noticed the really small ad in the bottom right-hand corner. Tsk-Tsk

4. Groups

I’ve seen some of the changes coming to groups, and me likee. However, I’d also add that calendar, and perhaps even upcoming, should really get tied into that product, for maximum usefulness. As well, groups and message boards both seem like a natural fit for our little widget, but then again, if it were up to me it’d be on every page at Yahoo! ;)

Well, I’ve wasted enough time listing what-ifs today. If I have some time in the coming weeks, I’ll try to do this again. If you create something similar, let me know and I’ll link to it. I love to read product reviews and ideas.