Yahoo is a company whose name is virtually synonymous with the early Internet era but in a fast-moving industry such as this one, that doesn't mean a lot. Eight years ago, the company turned down Microsoft's $45 billion bid, and today, Verizon is haggling for its core Internet business which the firm values at $4.8 billion. For comparison, that's over a billion less than what the Candy Crush developer King went for earlier this year.
Yahoo's biggest problem lies in the fact that its users are leaving it for other services. When your entire core business is based on the concept of being attractive to a lot of users, its value naturally plummets if you don't deliver products which many people want to use. When faced with that scenario, the company has two choices. One, it can purchase smaller businesses and try to use their own innovations to turn things around. That may have been Yahoo's line of thinking when it was buying up services like Tumblr in 2013, BrightRoll in 2014, and Flickr last year, but things may not have necessarily turned out the way they wanted. The second option for Yahoo is to innovate on its own and deliver new products that will help fuel user growth or at least counterbalance user decline. Cue solutions like Yahoo View, an app which the Sunnyvale, California-based firm debuted over the summer. The idea was simple, combine Hulu's video library and a Tumblr-powered community into an enormous social hub for people who like watching movies and TV and talking about them but aren't that keen on paying for that privilege.
After a couple of months spent exclusively in browsers, Yahoo View arrived in the Google Play Store and was met with harsh criticism from the Android community. That's mostly because it came to light that this app isn't exactly the real deal that was originally promised. Instead of letting you watch full episodes, most featured series are only present in the form of short video clips which don't amount to much on their own and are locked behind 30-second ads. The app does have some full-length episodes of certain animes but other than that, it doesn't seem like a complete product. The current state of this product seems rather strange considering how the desktop version of Yahoo View actually delivers on what the company promised back in August, so hopefully, some more positive changes are coming shortly.