Yahoo! Makes a Strange Bedfellow for iPhone
Everyone knows that Apple and Google share a comfy partnership. They recently announced the addition of YouTube access for AppleTV and the iPhone. Google also provides their mapping service on the iPhone and they’re the default search engine for Safari. The only action Yahoo! has had with Apple, and in particular the iPhone, is the ability to have Yahoo! Mail pushed to the iPhone’s email client. However, that’s no longer their only offering.
The iPhone’s generic Stock and Weather widget has been quietly updated with Yahoo!’s logo at the bottom-left of the widget’s screen. I’m not sure what this new alliance really means yet. Could it be that by having Yahoo! align with Apple, it’s protecting itself from an acquisition from Microsoft? Or maybe it’s simply a concerted effort by both Google and Yahoo! to outsmart and outrun Microsoft Live — through isolation. If I were to follow occam’s razor, then I might come to the conclusion that Yahoo! simply wanted a piece of the action, and they gave Apple an offer they couldn’t refuse (cold hard cash and a free Stock and Weather service).
Knowing Apple, it probably isn’t that simple. My bet is that it’s a concerted effort to isolate and shut out Microsoft from being a major player in what may be another iPod-like consumer bonanza. When it comes down to it, it’s all about branding, exposure and association. If consumers look at Apple as an innovator in consumer electronics and communication, then simply being associated with a product like the iPhone will instill a similar impression in consumers for companies like Google and Yahoo!. Oh, and Yahoo! bought their way in