Say the word “Beta” to a computer user and you might not get the last syllable out because they’ll already be running away at breakneck speed. Understandably, a lot of users avoid upgrading to stick with what they have, especially if it’s working fine.
I’ve been using Yahoo! Messenger 9.0 Beta since it launched in October of last year and it’s been great. Yes, it has its “moments” like any Beta software, but overall it’s very stable. So I thought I would share my favorite things about this new version which might encourage you to give it a try too. Some of these have been the subject of dedicated blog articles, so click the links to get more in-depth info. Or click here to watch a video demo.
#1 New emoticons & skins
All the communication functions of Messenger are great, but the real fun is in the extras like emoticons and skins. This version has six new emoticons inspired by users – Wasn’t Me!, Thumbs Up, Thumbs Down, Rock On , Hurry Up and Don’t Want To See. 9.0 Beta also has a brand new set of skins. Also, did you know you can insert some of the basic emoticons in your status message?
#2 Compact v. detailed view for contacts
We’ve got two views for your contact list in 9.0 Beta. Use the detailed view to see larger display images for your friends and get access to the hover menu to quickly IM, SMS or call a contact. Or choose the compact view to keep each contact on one line.
#3 Inline video player
This is one of the coolest new features in 9.0 Beta. When you send a video link to a friend from a popular site like YouTube (or they send one to you), the video player appears right in the IM window. Just click to watch the clip – no need to jump off to the video website. This makes it much easier to watch and talk about the video at the same time.
#4 It’s all about “hover”
9.0 Beta adds some handy features when you hover on a contact. In detailed list mode, hovering on a contact brings up a menu to IM, call or SMS. When you’re in compact mode, hovering on a contact brings up the full-featured contact card. Depending on the info you have for that contact, you can IM, call a specific number, SMS, send email and even edit their contact info – all with a single click.
#5 Same great features
All of my favorite features are still in 9.0 Beta – the Yahoo! Music LAUNCHcast plug-in, file transfer, photo sharing, ability to IM with my Windows Live™ Messenger friends, IM forwarding to my mobile phone when I’m offline, and free PC-to-PC calls. Check out our features page to see all the great stuff available in 9.0.
Why not give 9.0 Beta a try? Remember, you can always uninstall and go back to 8.1 if you’re not satisfied. And after you’ve used 9.0 for awhile, be sure to leave us feedback about your experience.
>> Download Yahoo! Messenger 9.0 Beta <<