By MAY WONG, AP Technology Writer
Yahoo Inc. is expanding its presence beyond the PC, moving onto Web-enabled cell phones and other mobile devices so users can access their customized content while untethered.
Yahoo Go Mobile, a new service set to be launched Friday at the International Consumer Electronics Show, is the latest example of the growing trend of get-your-information-anytime-anywhere.
Many of the features and services that Yahoo has been amassing in recent years, beyond the e-mail already available on many so-called smartphones, can now follow its 400 million users wherever they go.
Anyone with a Yahoo account can have their customized data they now get through the Web portal load itself into whichever device they carry. The information -- from news to restaurant reviews to personal contacts and appointments -- will be synchronized through whatever data network they may be using -- cellular or Wi-Fi, for example.
Yahoo Go Mobile will work on any cellular network, but for now, only on Nokia's Series 60 line of smartphones. Support for additional mobile devices is planned.
The product encompasses a new user interface designed to fit on the small screen of a smartphone.
Instead of the plethora of links now viewable at once on a user's personalized Yahoo home page, Yahoo Go streamlines the main menu content into major categories such as search, mail, news and calendar, which users could then scroll through.
Yahoo's music and video services is not yet available through Yahoo Go Mobile but may be added later, company officials said.
The Yahoo Go application is downloadable for free at Yahoo's Web site. However, the Sunnyvale, Calif.-based Internet giant says it has also signed a deal with Nokia Corp. so the cell phone maker will be pre-installing the Yahoo Go program on select mobile devices. Cingular Wireless also plans to promote Yahoo Go.
Yahoo is also working with Motorola Inc. to bring Yahoo Go to those phones, said Marco Boerries, senior vice president of Yahoo's "Connected Life" division. Bringing the service to Java-based phones will come later, but Boerries could not specify when.
Another version of Yahoo Go for PC-connected televisions, called Yahoo Go TV, will be launched in coming months, the company said. It will similarly let Yahoo users access much of their personalized Web data as long as the TV is connected to the Internet.
Unlike Yahoo Go Mobile, the TV version of the service will also include music and video content from Yahoo.
Copyright 2006 The Associated Press.
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