Yahoo is facing imminent threat from Microsoft, has made Yahoo Mail available in 8 local languages namely, Tamil, Hindi, Kannada, Telugu, Malayalam, Bengali, Marathi, and Gujarati. This is just a subset of Yahoo’s revamped Global rollout across 70 markets worldwide, 27 of which are simultaneous, including 22 new languages, in 16 new countries.
The Yahoo Website is already available in Hindi, Marathi and Tamil.
Users who wish to switch over to the new languages, can simply head over to Account Settings of their Yahoo Profile, add their preferred language and hit the ‘Save’ button. We think that initially at least, Yahoo, who fiercely protects its users, should have made the language switch accessible on the main landing page. Going local is vital for reconnect with the users feels Nitin Mathur, Senior Director, Marketing, Yahoo! India, “Languages form a critical part of our services. Not everyone is comfortable using English as a language to communicate, and this can act as a deterrent for them to use the medium. Making our mail services available in eight languages that are widely spoken is a step forward to take the digital medium beyond the metros to Tier II cities”.
Though the menus & interface language can be chosen, it doesn’t allow users to send mails in Hindi/Devanagri script yet. Further, Yahoo’s own internal research confirms that 99% of the users still prefer to use email in English language. So how is this going to help, is anyone’s guess.