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-   -   Review: Yahoo Go Version 2 - Including GPS Support - BerryReview (http://www.blackberryforums.com/bbf-reviews/83273-review-yahoo-go-version-2-including-gps-support-berryreview.html)

Entropy666 06-27-2007 03:02 PM

Review: Yahoo Go Version 2 - Including GPS Support - BerryReview
 
Review: Yahoo Go Version 2 - Including GPS Support - BerryReview.com
Rating: 7.5/10
Original Review: BerryReview.com
OTA Link: Yahoo! Front Page
Desktop Link: Yahoo! Go. The Internet to go.
Cost: Free!

Compatibility: Limited to newer BlackBerry devices, check out the desktop link above for more info



As a fair warning for any of our readers on a limited BlackBerry account the download is ~900KB and after you run the program for the first time It downloads another 140KB. That is a quick way to rack up a bill if you are on a pay as you go plan.

This second version of Yahoo Go is now available for select BlackBerry Devices. They have a weird support scheme, for example they support the 7130 and 8800 but not the 883o or 8300. The software lets you tie into many of the features of the Yahoo portal all from the convenience of your BlackBerry. As of now they support email, address book, calendar, Flickr, news, stocks, weather, sports, and a very tight integration with Yahoo search. Read on for the meat of the review...

First Impressions: As I mentioned when Yahoo released this product the first thing that caught my eye was the large size of the download. The second was the cool nifty carousel that you use for navigation. All in all it is a very functional application with many features but some of them are quite difficult to configure. My favorite as of now is the ability to view my Flickr account from my BlackBerry without having to use other third party tools.

Installation: As I mentioned above this program is a monster of a download (almost 1 megabyte) for the BlackBerry. The only OTA application I have ever seen that was larger was the Beiks talking dictionaries which are full of audio files. This may scare off users who are on a limited BlackBerry service plan. The data for the application is also quite intensive. After using Yahoo Go for 3 days I had already racked up 7MB of data transfer. The install was pretty straightforward. Once you install you will be asked for a Yahoo ID which most people already have. If not it offers you the ability to create one. It then proceeds to download quite a bit more for your profile.



Interface: The interface for Yahoo Go has to be one of the coolest things I have seen on the BlackBerry so far. It implements a carousel where you scroll left and right to switch between the different widgets. Scrolling up and down allows you to interact with every widget. Clicking down on the widget in the carousel takes you to the full screen view of that widget. For example in the main screen you would see the first two emails and then if you click down it would show you the rest of the emails. Now lets get down to each of the widgets.



Main Widget: The main widget provides you with a search box where you can search the web. You can also search from any of the other widgets at any time by just typing. The search is very primitive and uses Yahoo Go's interface to show you results which in my opinion could have been done better. You then also have the date and access to your calendar and address book. Each time you click on the calendar it requires a data connection to retrieve your calendar. As you can see in the screenshot above it allows you to show your calendar items in three views: agenda, day, and week view. Every change in view also requires a data resync which can get quite tedious. You can also add calendar entries in this manner by clicking the menu button.



Your address book does not automatically sync to the Yahoo address book so you have to click the menu option sync address book. This sync process took way too long so I never completed it. I gave it 10 minutes and then canceled the sync. Without synchronizing the address book you can only search for address book contacts without any listings.



Mail Widget: The email interface is pretty but not as functional as the native BlackBerry email interface. This seems to be a feature for phones that do not have email built in. There are no shortcuts in the email interface that I found to be of any use. If you hit R in an email it takes you the the next unread email instead of prompting a reply. The latest two emails are shown in the main screen of the email widget and if you click down on the widget you will get a full listing of your emails. Each email only has the header downloaded so you will have to wait when opening each email for the rest of the email to download. There are not many bells and whistles in the email client so I will move on. There was a nice feature of the email client that prompts you when you get a new email and then proceeds to syncronize all of your emails if you click yes. The compose email screen is very primitive and should be avoided. I would personally only use the email client as a backup for alternate email addresses at Yahoo.



Flickr Widget: The next widget over is the most useful of the whole bunch. It allows you access to your Flickr account. If you do not have a Flickr account it will allow you to register from the widget. Viewing your photos is quite intuitive but sadly there is no way to upload pictures to your Flickr account nor is there the option to save the picture to your BlackBerry. UPDATE: I have been told by a few users and have confirmed that there is the ability to upload pictures to flickr from your 8100 Pearl and 8300 Curve. On the other hand so far I do not see the option on both a 8800 and 8830 test device.



Weather Widget: Next is the weather widget that provides you a small forecast of the weather for your location. You are also provided a simple drop down box to switch between locations. If you click in on the forecast it will give you the extended weekly forecast including some basic information such as humidity from weather.com.



News & Entertainment Widgets: Two of the other widgets are the News and Entertainment widgets. Both of these two widgets show you the top stories in each area on the main screen. You can also setup what Yahoo calls a watchlist which is a setting that brings articles with certain keywords to display on your widget. Sorry to say there is no RSS support as of now from what I can tell.



Finance Widget: The finance widget is pretty self explanatory. You can add stock ticker names for companies to customize your front page. If you click in you will see more finance headlines. Once again you have the ability to setup watchlists for keywords you wish to see articles about.



Sports Widget: This widget like the ones above will show you the major sports games scheduled for the day if you click on the my scores button. If you click down on the widget it will show you headlines in sports for the day. There is no customization option here to show sports or teams that you follow.



Local & Maps Widget: This widget suprised me by being packed with functionality. Did Yahoo even bother to mention that their local and map search includes the ability to use the GPS built into some BlackBerry devices? On my 8800 it found my location faster than the native BlackBerry Maps program. To use the GPS just click on the change location option and choose "Automatic Positioning (GPS)" on a GPS enabled BlackBerry. Since we do not have a test GPS puck I could not test this out on external GPS devices. You have 3 options to select a location. You can either let the GPS will find your location, choose from your preset locations on Yahoo, or you can enter in your own location and save it. The program allows you to search for Points Of Interest (POI) and driving directions. A nifty feature is the ability to view the traffic near your location. This is even more useful since you can set up the program to monitor certain routes that you use frequently. You can also map items from your Yahoo address book if you have one. You can also save routes from the driving directions provided. Sadly I found that you cannot map addresses from the native BlackBerry address book.

Pros:
  • Beautiful interface with carousel navigation
  • Tight integration with many of the Yahoo online services
  • GPS support
  • Access to your Flickr account
  • News, Finance, Sports, and Entertainment headlines
  • Access to your Yahoo email, calendar, and address book
Cons:
  • Large program downloads and painful waiting due to constant data usage
  • Address book synchronization is way too complicated and lengthy
  • Email interface is primitive compared to the native BlackBerry email client
  • No RSS feed support for news
Conclusion: If you are on an unlimited BlackBerry data plan I would advise that you download this beautiful new program by Yahoo. The interface is cutting edge and really shows what the BlackBerry is capable of. As I mentioned above there are many useful tools in the utility such as access to Flickr and GPS support for location services. Yahoo has a bit to go before this program will be completely refined for the BlackBerry but they have made a good start in that direction. Some of the features are very useful both others such as the news widgets seems underdeveloped. While this may be a wonderful application for non-smart phone devices Yahoo really needs to work on getting Yahoo Go to integrate better with the native BlackBerry OS. For starters they should find a way for you to synchronize your BlackBerry contacts and calendar to the Yahoo service. That would be something I would love to review. That way Yahoo would be providing BES like functionality to all BIS customers.

chrisb3 06-28-2007 09:05 AM

Nice review. The app does have a way to go, but man, does the map widget rock. It always kept me within 3 yards of my actual location. More often than not 2 yards or less. It also looked like it updated location better than both Google Maps and BB Maps combined.

Entropy666 06-28-2007 09:46 AM

Thanks Chrisb3 I am glad you enjoyed the review. Truthfully I thought the GPS functionality was the golden nugget in YahooGo. They do not mention it anywhere in their documentation and it seems to work better than bbmaps, google maps, and infospace findit. I got a lock on my location within 10 or so seconds.

jfyuga 06-28-2007 08:44 PM

Wow, my first post. Thanks for the review. Very helpful. I wanted to let you know that there is RSS feed suppot.

If you click on the News & Entertainment widget, scroll all the way to the bottom and click on Add Sources, and scroll down a bit, there is option for adding any RSS source via URL. Yahoo! Go has some preloaded RSS options as well (from Yahoo!, NY Times, ABC news, CNN, etc.). Works very well.

Thanks again!

snowskier79 06-28-2007 08:54 PM

Excellent write up Entropy666!

Entropy666 06-29-2007 10:17 AM

Thank you snowskier79 for the kind words. I try to be as complete as possible with the reviews. jfyuga I actually noticed the same RSS option today but decided on not updating the review for now since every time I try to add an RSS feed it errors out after a minute and then tells me there was an error in the communication. Did you manage to get past this?

MrRosen 07-26-2007 08:29 AM

Using the Yahoo! Go Calendar on a BBerry 8703e??
 
Wondering if anyone knows how to either add and/or edit calendar entries from my BBerry mobile device (8703e) in Yahoo! Go Calendar.

I can see my entries, but I don't see the "Menu" button that is referred to in this review, in order to to be able to add new ones or edit existing ones.

redsoxnation 07-26-2007 10:29 AM

Any word if Yahoo will support this app with the 8700

dmk11 07-27-2007 05:21 PM

Nice review! One correction though, you CAN upload pictures to your flickr account.

akosnitzky 07-29-2007 05:36 PM

Wirelessly posted (Verizon 8830: BlackBerry8830/4.2.2 Profile/MIDP-2.0 Configuration/CLDC-1.1 VendorID/105)

Available for vzw 8830 group yet?

akosnitzky 07-31-2007 11:10 PM

Well I just downloaded the product finally. Nice modules. I could see itunes using the same technology for the iphone.

noeffectx 08-01-2007 09:24 PM

"Flickr Widget: The next widget over is the most useful of the whole bunch. It allows you access to your Flickr account. If you do not have a Flickr account it will allow you to register from the widget. Viewing your photos is quite intuitive but sadly there is no way to upload pictures to your Flickr account nor is there the option to save the picture to your BlackBerry."

There is an upload option on 8100s.

akosnitzky 08-04-2007 12:20 PM

I thought the review was dead-on. I think much depends on the extent to which one uses Yahoo. Maybe its me, but I did not get much out of the watchlist feature, I look forward to seeing numerous upgrades with this product.

CINCNORAD 08-05-2007 08:17 PM

I liked it... But man is it slow in updating. Just refreshing the weather takes several minutes. And I'm using Sprint EVDO.

Entropy666 08-06-2007 12:40 PM

Yeah I know the program is quite data hungry. I have to admit that it does have some really cool features but it slowed down my berry to the point where i just stopped using it. I kept on getting hourglasses when the program was autoupdating.

gameboy213 10-06-2007 12:38 PM

yeah... this thing is really slow. nice looking but way to slow for EVDO usage.

Entropy666 10-08-2007 03:19 PM

Yeah hopefully Yahoo developers are listening since the program has a lot of potential and some very innovative features that only Yahoo and a few others could really offer

anonymous2u 12-30-2008 12:56 AM

...

WayneHardy 03-31-2009 08:58 AM

Just read this and found it informative, I've just come to BB's and have used Yahoo Go on my last couple of phones.
One thing however is that the version I was using was version 3!
Is this available to BB? and if so, where can I downlod it?

GRom 03-31-2009 11:40 PM

I think it's here.


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