Although shifting a beta version of a service to "official" status is often neither here nor there, watch for Yahoo! to generate further buzz around the product in the near future. A press communication I received mentioned interesting buzz generators like interactive kiosks in several large cities using Yahoo! Local, as well the possibility of local prizes for registered users of the service.
Regardless, today's word seems just the latest in a recent glut of changes to different search-oriented websites and portals in the recent past. Not long ago, Amazon.com
It's a virtual guarantee these are not the last concerted efforts at knocking Google
At some point, the services will reach some degree of maturity and slow down from the current frantic pace of beta pre-launches followed by (ho-hum) official launches of products some of us have already been using, bugs and all, for months now. It's enough to wonder if maybe, soon, users will start to tune out the constant layers of fanfare and get a small dose of beta-testing burnout. To those who were already using Yahoo! Local or one of the competitive products, today's "news" seems a blip, a reminder of competitive forces -- and the search market land grab -- more than anything else.
Read more about the Internet search space:
- Relive Yahoo!'s original launch of Local service, in beta form. Here's Google's, too.
- Is Ask Jeeves getting in shape?
- Should Google be a portal? Or not?
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Alyce Lomax does not own shares of any of the companies mentioned.