On Tuesday 2nd September, BT Openworld launched its BT Yahoo partnership, offering 'The Internet - the way it was meant to be'. The partnership means that existing broadband subscribers can opt to upgrade (at no cost) to the new service, and all new BT Openworld broadband consumers will automatically join the BT Yahoo service.
The existing ADSL service remains the same price and is effectively the same as it was last week. What will change is that a Yahoo Browser is now on offer, which while based around Internet Explorer offers many enhancements, including customisable sidebars and from what we have seen of it, a great deal of flexibility in precisely what content you will see on the main page. This new package is different to the traditional portal, since those usually tell you what content you can display, the Yahoo system is very customisable and appears to be very low key in the amount of advertising.
The new BT Yahoo, doesn't stop with just a pretty web page, it will be packaged with anti-spam measures, anti-virus, a free firewall (ZoneAlarm), parental controls and a pop-up blocker. The parental controls are designed to work both with single PC type systems, and in cases where people are running two or more PCs, which means you can set the level of control individually based on the login people use. For those worried that a new browser means they cannot just use simple old IE without the sidebars, don't panic, IE will still run.
The new BT Yahoo is going to get a mixed reception, the early adopters of BT Openworld are likely to not like it, they are by now savvy at finding what they want on the Internet. This new deal we feel though will appeal to the massed market, and that is where if the number of UK broadband users is to increase massively we will see sales. The new BT Yahoo site may just offer the right mix of 'this is what you can do with the Internet - go play', which may well make existing dialup users sit up and take notice.
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