Yahoo rolls out enhanced e-mail service

SAN FRANCISCO, Aug 26, 2007 (AFP) – US Internet titan Yahoo on Monday is introducing an upgraded free e-mail service with enhancements that include letting people send text messages from computers to mobile telephones. The improved Yahoo! Mail being rolled out around the world in the coming weeks is the most extensive overhaul of the web-based e-mail service since it was launched a decade ago.

Because the text messaging feature depends on cooperation of mobile phone service providers its debuts are limited for now to India, Canada, the Philippines and the United States.

“We are really bringing text and instant messaging to a new audience,” Yahoo! Mail vice president John Kremer told AFP.

“My mother now instant messages through mail to my children. She can send messages to my son while he is at soccer practices; he carries his mobile phone everywhere.”

Yahoo doesn’t charge for sending or receiving text messages, but mobile telephone users may be charged fees by carriers that provide their services.

Yahoo is making its upgraded service available to the more than 250 million users of its e-mail as it competes with rivals Google and Microsoft for “eye balls” that can be parlayed into advertising re