This telephone has too many shortcomings to be seriously considered as a means of communication - Western Union memo, 1876
INTERNET PORTAL Yahoo has confounded its critics by becoming the highest traffic website from US desktops.
According to figures released by Comscore the Yahoo website has attracted more hits than nearest rival Google by a margin of three million during December 2013.
While many analysts might have thought that Yahoo was done for, it seems that its new direction under CEO Marissa Mayer has proven a hit with 195 million unique user hits, compared with 192 million for Google, 175 million for Microsoft, 140 million for Facebook - the only social network in the top five - and 120 million for AOL.
Although technically Facebook is the biggest single website, Yahoo has reason to celebrate. However, these figures only refer to desktop computer access. Mobile and tablet viewing might change the figures somewhat.
To that end, Yahoo has made a series of strategic purchases to strengthen its position on iOS and Android. These include the News Digest app created by Nick D'Aloisio, whose Summly news reader was bought by Yahoo for a reported $30 million, a price that included D'Aloisio's services.
For Android, the Aviate launcher, a location and context aware launcher that customises itself to the user was another key Yahoo purchase, though it is too soon to tell what plans the company has for it, and it remains in private beta.
The question for Yahoo CEO Mayer, however, remains whether she can turn this large hit count into a profitable business. Perhaps the first step will be to avoid more virus scares like the company had in December, when 27,000 people per hour were infected with Bitcoin mining malware. µ
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