Yahoo! Mail Turns 10!!
A while back we posted about introducing unlimited storage to everyone. We also mentioned that we were fast approaching our 10 year anniversary. That day has come! On October 8, 2007, Yahoo! Mail officially turned 10. The VP of mail, John Kremer, published the message below on the corporate blog. It definitely makes for some good reading and a bit of nostalgia.
Andrew – Yahoo! Mail Team
Today marks a special milestone for Yahoo!. Ten years ago today, Yahoo! Mail was born. It’s hard to imagine that just a decade ago, the idea of free email accessible from anywhere was a novelty.
Think of how far we’ve come since then. Web mail now is one of the most popular ways to stay in touch. It’s brought families closer together, let travelers send regards from the road, and made the concept of change-of-address notices virtually obsolete.
Ten years ago, Yahoo! Mail launched with just 3 megabytes of storage and the only images you were likely to receive were ASCII Art. Today, JPEGs are by far the most popular attachment type in Yahoo! Mail. Ten years ago mobile phones were bulky, expensive luxuries that were basically used for one thing: to make important phone calls. These days, everyone from students to busy parents and grandparents use their cell phones to check email on the go. And ten years ago, many people didn’t “get” Web mail or why they would need an address that wasn’t tethered to their ISP. Now many use it as their primary personal mail address.
Since we’re feeling nostalgic, we’ve put together some email milestones from the last decade:
- October 1997: Yahoo! Mail launches following our acquisition of Four 11, creators of RocketMail.
- December 1998: The movie You’ve Got Mail debuts.
- March 1999: CNN’s Ten Commandments of Email cites that Americans sent 2.1 billion emails daily (vs. 196 billion per day this year).
- December 1999: Yahoo! Mail launches Spamguard to detect spam and banish it to a separate folder.
- January 2000: Web mail survives Y2K.
- November 2001: Pope John Paul II is the first pontiff to send an email apology.
- March 2002: It’s reported internationally that email outpaces snail mail as the preferred method for residential communication.
- December 2003: Congress passes the CAN-SPAM Act of 2003 to regulate the sending of commercial email.
- July 2004: Yahoo! acquires Oddpost, bringing AJAX to Yahoo! and inspiring Yahoo! Mail’s most significant upgrade ever.
- June 2005: Broadway’s “Spamalot” wins Tony Award for Best Musical.
- March 2006: IDG study shows that Americans sent 11.8 billion photos via email in 2005, compared with 2.6 billion in 2000. By 2009, this number is projected to 25.7 billion images.
- March 2007: Yahoo! Mail announces free, unlimited e-mail storage for all users.
- August 2007: According to Comscore , the worldwide Web mail market counts approximately 543 million people, with Yahoo! Mail alone representing 255 million.
It’s funny to reflect that when Rocketmail first started, many users chose to list their email addresses in a public directory because they wanted everyone to know how to contact them. Fast-forward to a world where we invest a huge amount of time and diligence protecting our users from spam (now estimated to represent more than 70% of all email) and phishing attacks.
So what about you? We put together a brief survey to find out how your email habits have evolved over the past 10 years. Please share your thoughts with us (or leave them as comments), and we’ll be sure to report back on our findings later this month.
Until then, happy emailing!
Vice President, Yahoo! Mail