YAHOO! India is eyeing rural India with its Emerging Market Initiative. Speaking to Business Line at his Bangalore office, Dr Prasad Ram, CTO, Yahoo! R&D India, said that `livelihood-based' offerings for the rural market would roll out by mid-2006.
The Yahoo! R&D office here, designed as a microcosm of the one in the US was set up in last June. Since then, Indian engineers have contributed eight products to the global market. Three of them - Vertical Search, Personalised Anti-Spam Filters and Self Expression - were created, developed and completed here. While the first service offers Internet users the ability to narrow down their search in verticals such as travel, real estate, shopping and automotives, the second works on the premise that people have discrete definitions of spam. By studying their reaction to spam in their inbox, Yahoo! Mail will now be able to `learn' to minimise it using personalised filters. The third product, Self Expression, is a personalised Web page that will be "rich with self expression".
The company underwent a "rethinking of products" for rural markets. Dr Ram spoke about the probability of people in remote villages and towns adopting e-shopping, since they have limited access to shops. The company is presently undertaking the implementation rounds of the services. Pilot tests would begin in January, he added.