On the heels of Verizon’s acquisition of Yahoo comes a much-needed (and overdue) revamp for Yahoo Mail. The new Yahoo Mail is visually much cleaner and more minimal, with increased space between UI elements. Because people love customization, you can also now skin Yahoo Mail in a variety of color themes, with some changing in response to the time of day. There are also new stationary opinions, and the ability to use Twitter’s emoji set from their open-source library.
Search has been improved, and the functionality mirrors what is found in other email apps. (You can now search with a combination of name, keyword, and date.) Access to and viewing of previously sent and received files has also been updated. The left side navigation now has categories for photos and documents, which displays all the attachments you’ve ever sent in one place and offers hover-over rich previews.
There’s also consideration for increased accessibility. For low-vision and hard-of-hearing users, there’s not only support for NVDA (NonVisual Desktop Access) and VoiceOver screen readers, but layouts with high magnification and full keyboard navigation.
One other big change is the discontinuation of Ad Free Mail, which is replaced with a new plan called Yahoo Mail Pro. Like its predecessor, Yahoo Mail Pro will have no ads and includes priority customer support. While Ad Free Mail was $49.99 a year, Yahoo Mail Pro is $34.99 per year, or $3.49 a month. The mobile-only option is $9.99 per year, or $0.99 a month.
There are myriad of other tiny changes (like a GIF library, which is very important), and you can explore the updates more in-depth on Yahoo’s website. The new Yahoo Mail is available starting today, and if you decide it’s not for you, there’s always the option to switch back to the old look in settings.
While Yahoo Mail’s new build and look was needed, it remains to be seen if the updates can woo new users to a company fraught by hacks. Yahoo has suffered from multiple security breaches dating back to August 2013 that affected over a billion people, exposing names, emails, and hashed passwords. The hacks delayed Verizon’s acquisition and an independent committee found Yahoo at fault for not sufficiently responding to the incidents.