Yahoo seeks to shake up search, Web browsingSAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Joining the battle to redefine Internet search, Yahoo is taking aim with a new browser enhancement it calls "Axis."
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Joining the battle to redefine Internet search, Yahoo is taking aim with a new browser enhancement it calls "Axis."
It alters browsers made by other companies to display search results in a more convenient and visual format.
The troubled Internet company Yahoo Inc. released Axis in Apple's app store late Wednesday. That version will work only on Apple's iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch. The software also can be installed as a plug-in on most major browsers used on desktop computers and laptops. Apps for other mobile devices are in the works.
A device running Axis can display search results in a panorama of visual thumbnails that can be scrolled through above a Web page. It's a departure from search engines' traditional presentation of a list of staid Web links that require more navigation and guesswork.
"Searching through links has outlived its utility," said Shashi Seth, a Yahoo Inc. senior vice president. "Users are demanding more now because we are all short on time."
All the major search engines are adopting new formats intended to make it easier for users to find information without clicking through to page after page.
Two weeks ago, Microsoft Corp. previewed an upcoming change that will spread Bing's search results in three columns, including one devoted to personalized recommendations pulled from Facebook, Twitter and other social networking services.
Last week, Google unveiled a new search feature called a "Knowledge Graph" that seeks to provide more immediate answers by highlighting information from a database containing more than 500 million entries about people, places and other commonly requested things.
The biggest challenge facing Axis may be overcoming the perception that Yahoo stopped innovating in search when it joined forces with Microsoft and started relying on Bing.
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