Yahoo closes seven products to become more focused

Avatars, Blackberry app, Clues, App Search, Sports IQ, Message Boards site and Updates API all going

Technology trends and news by Steven Loeb
March 2, 2013
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In an effort to make itself a sleeker, and more focused, company, Yahoo is taking a page from Google, announcing that it has decided to simply get rid of products that it feels are either redundant or outdated.

"At Yahoo!, we’re focused on making your daily habits more inspiring and entertaining. This means that we’re constantly reviewing and iterating on our products and experiences," Jay Rossiter, Yahoo's executive vice president for platforms, wrote in a blogpost Friday afternoon.

In some cases, he said, it means updating the products. In others, it means shutting those products down. So Yahoo is getting rid rid of a total of seven products.

The ones that are being jettisoning are: Yahoo Avatars, Yahoo app for Blackberry, Yahoo Clues, Yahoo App Search, Yahoo Sports IQ, Yahoo Message Boards website and Yahoo Updates API.

If users want to continue using their avatars with Yahoo products, they can download the image from their browser by April 1 and upload it to their Yahoo Profile. Also, those users that already downloaded the Yahoo app for Blackberry will be able to continue to use it but it will no longer be supported.

Yahoo Sports IQ ssers' will have their final lifetime Sports IQ score and rank will be automatically transferred to and preserved within their Yahoo Fantasy Profile.

Message boards for individual properties, like Yahoo Finance and Yahoo Fantasy Sports, will still be active. In addition, Yahoo is encourage users to to ask and answer questions on Yahoo Answers, and discuss issues in the comments section on Yahoo News.

All of the products, except for Yahoo Updates API, will be closing on April 1. Updates API will no longer be supported on April 16.

"Before making these decisions, we look at a variety of factors. The most critical question we ask is whether the experience is truly a daily habit that still resonates for all of you today," Rossiter wrote. "Ultimately, we’re making these changes in an effort to sharpen our focus. By continuing to hone in on our core products and experiences, we’ll be able to make our existing products the very best they can be."

Taking a page from Google

Yahoo seems to apeing Google in its quest to dump old products. 

Starting in 2011, after Larry Page took over as CEO, following the departure of Eric Schmidt, Google has made it its mission to build good products for their users. Part of that process meant cutting out useless and repetative products.

Since then, over 50 Google products have been altered, or removed, including Google Apps for Teams, Google Listen and Google Video for Business, as well at least 150 Google-created blogs for products and services, in August.

Most recently, the company dumped its free version of its Google Apps For Businesses.

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