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Yahoo! Triggers the battle of bytes

16-June-2004
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Yahoo! Triggers the battle of bytes

Yahoo! The competition has never clicked better for email users. Yahoo.com — an Internet portal and email service provider — has increased its free email storage capacity from 6 MB to 100 MB. Apart from a new user interface, the improved email service now also allows users to send a message up to 10 MB size.

According to industry experts, the competition is heating up in the email business after Google’s announcement to offer 1 GB storage space in its proposed email service, gmail.com. Microsoft owned Hotmail.com is also expected to launch some new features soon to combat competition.

Yahoo, however, has introduced new features only for yahoo.com users, the new service has not been introduced for yahoo.co.in (India version) users as yet. When contacted by eFE, Yahoo! India country head Neville Taraporewalla claimed that the increase in the free email storage is likely to spread to India and Taiwan in two months time.

“As Yahoo retains the number one position in the global and domestic email service space, it was but necessary for the company to take a lead in offering this extra free email capacity to the email users,” Mr Taraporewalla told eFE.

The Yahoo users who had already paid up for using extra storage capacity (refered to as premium users by Yahoo), will now be upgraded to a free storage capacity of 2 GB, he said.

In addition to this, the company is also in the process of offering 15 million additional email IDs to the users in India. “These are those email IDs that have been dormant for sometime and we are looking at offering these email IDs to users,” Mr Taraporewalla said.

The company is also planning to offer anti-spam filters. “The idea is to grab a larger share in the email services space in terms of number,” he said. Yahoo has 30 million registered users in India including 13 million active users. Globa-lly, it has 274 million users.

On the other hand, Yahoo’s competitor, MSN (that runs the email service by the name Hotmail.com) is also planning to introduce trial features over the coming weeks or months. However, MSN India marketing manager Rajnish did not clearly point out whether these changes could translate into an increase in extra free email storage.

“We are constantly looking at our business and our customers’ needs to ensure we are delivering great services. We have nothing to announce at this time,” Mr Rajnish said.

MSN is currently offering 2 megabyte (MB) of free email space with an option to upgrade for extra storage of 100 MB under the paid subscription model. At present, MSN has 12 million users in India.

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