Yahoo – History, Origin and More.

Yahoo - Brand-Name, Computer, Computer Monitor, Computer Network, Connection

Yahoo – History, Origin and More.


Yahoo Search Engine Malysia
Photo of Yahoo webpage on a monitor screen, circa Dec 11, 2013 in Johor, Malaysia. Yahoo! is an Internet portal that incorporates a search engine.

What is Yahoo: Explained

Yahoo! is an Internet platform that features a search engine and a directory of World Wide Web sites arranged by topic categories in a hierarchy. It was created in 1994.

Quick Facts

Creator (person)
Jerry Yang and David Filo
Release Date
Developed By (company)
Apollo Global Management

In the beginning of 1994 two Ph.D. candidates in Electrical Engineering at Stanford University— Jerry Yang (born November 6, 1968, in Taipei, Taiwan) and David Filo (born April 20, 1966, in Wisconsin) were looking for a single place to find useful Web sites and for a way to keep track of their personal interests on the Internet. As they didn’t manage to find such a tool, they decided to create their own. Thus the now ubiquitous web portal and a global brand Yahoo! began as a student hobby and evolved into a site, that has changed the way people communicate with each other, find and access information.

Filo and Yang started realization of his project in a campus trailer in February, 1994, and before long they were spending more time on their home-brewed lists of favorite links than on their doctoral dissertations. Eventually, Jerry and David’s lists became too long and unwieldy, and they broke them out into categories. When the categories became too full, they developed subcategories, thus the core concept behind Yahoo was born.

David Filo and Jerry Yang
David Filo and Jerry Yang co-created an Internet website called “Jerry and David’s Guide to the World Wide Web” which was renamed “Yahoo!”

The Web site started out as Jerry and David’s Guide to the World Wide Web, but eventually received a new moniker with the help of a dictionary. Filo and Yang decided to select the name Yahoo, because they liked the general definition of the word (which comes from Gulliver’s Travels by Jonathan Swift, where a Yahoo is a legendary being): rude, unsophisticated, uncouth. Later the name Yahoo was popularized as an bacronym for Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle

It serves as a directory for both novice and experienced Web users, providing a structured view of hundreds of thousands of websites and millions of pages. It also offers one of the most effective methods for searching the Internet for a certain topic. If a search argument does not go to a Yahoo subject page, it will still lead to results from the six or seven major search engine sites that Yahoo! connects to.

The majority of the company’s revenue comes from search and display adverts. The remainder is revenue from listings-based services, transactions, royalties, patent licensing, and fees.

It offers a web portal; a search engine called Yahoo Search, and other services, such as mail services (Yahoo! Mail), news services (Yahoo! News), finance services (Yahoo! Finance)

What happened to Yahoo!?

The search engine was initially was thought of as a futuristic platform and gained fame and profits. However, the company suffered due to letting go of missed opportunities and, for many years, battled Google, a significant search engine competitor. Yahoo!, as a whole, lacked a clear vision for the company’s ultimate goal from the start. The company’s ultimate doom was predicted years ago by numerous former workers due to a run of bad Execs who lacked a vision for the future.

Yahoo! launched Yahoo! Instant Messenger, purchased the Internet photo network Flickr, added a slew of new services, and purchased a 40% stake in Alibaba, a Chinese e-commerce startup. Yet, despite these moves, many of Yahoo! ‘s competitors have survived.

The company appointed Marissa Mayer as CEO and president in 2012 amidst mounting financial difficulties. Even though she was instrumental in creating Google, her efforts to bring Yahoo! around were largely unsuccessful. Verizon Communications stated in 2016 that it would buy the company’s main assets.

The final sale, which took place in 2017, was estimated to be worth $4.48 billion. Yahoo! was later absorbed into Oath, a newly formed subsidiary.

Verizon, In May, announced that it was selling the properties to Apollo Global Management for $5 billion, less than half of the almost $9 billion the telecom giant paid for them originally and a fraction of the hundreds of billions the two companies were valued at their peaks. 

Yahoo! is currently owned by Apollo Global Management, will now be administered independently by Apollo Funds, and overseen by CEO Guru Gowrappan.

The Difference between Yahoo and Google

Google and Yahoo! are the most popular search engines, with the largest market stocks, and both play a significant role in the computer software sector. They have expanded their services and have been employing the same technology, but they deliver different information. However, the features, tools, and even search results of Google and Yahoo are significantly different since each business provides a wholly separate user experience. Yahoo, for instance, has news on its top page, but Google does not. 

Search Algorithm

Google and Yahoo! both employ a set of instructions known as algorithms. Of course, the most crucial part of every search engine is the discreet algorithm. However, the Google algorithm is regarded to be superior to Yahoos. This is due to its preference for high-quality material over well-established connections and pages, unlike Yahoo’s preference for ancient and well-established websites.

Search Results

Google and Yahoo! not only locate web pages, but they also show them. Both rank URLs based on the content they include and the information a user is looking for. Page ranking is important since most users want to get information as fast as possible and prefer to look on the first page of results. Google and Yahoo! both index and search the same websites. However, Google provides users with relevant and accurate results and provides them with quick results. In comparison, Yahoo! ‘s homepage attracts users with an array of interactive features such as news, sports, weather, and so on. Users find it simple to get information and connect to the rest of the world.

Features and Tools

Both Google and Yahoo! provide their users with several unique tools and services. For example, Google’s ‘Maps’ tool allows users to discover any location and even zoom in to view the real picture of most streets, while Yahoo! ‘s ‘hotel finding tool’ allows users to see hotel pricing and availability. Google and Yahoo also provide shopping features that allow customers to compare costs across numerous retailers.

Design Difference

In search engines, design refers to the information available on each website rather than its appearance. So, for instance, if a user searches for a famous musician, the search engine will present information with videos of the sought figure at the top of the page, whereas Google would provide the same results.

Yahoo Release History

The origins of the Yahoo! Search may be traced back to Jerry Yang and David Filo, then Stanford University students, who founded Yahoo! Directory in 1994. In 1995, they launched Yahoo! Search, which allowed users to search the Yahoo! Directory. Despite not being a genuine Web crawler search engine, it was the first popular search engine on the Web. They later licensed other firms’ Web search engines.

Intikomi (2002): The company purchased its Web search technology to deliver its own search engine results. They purchased Inktomi, a “behind the scenes” or OEM search engine provider whose results are shown on other firms’ websites and once powered Yahoo!

Overture Services, Inc. (2003): They bought Overture Services, Inc., which contained AlltheWeb and AltaVista’s search engines. Although Yahoo! possessed various search engines, they didn’t use them on the main yahoo.com website at first and instead relied on Google’s search engine.

Web crawler: The company launched its own web crawler-based search engine. They developed a crawler termed Yahoo! by combining the skills of search engine firms they had purchased and their past research. All of the company’s websites with a web search capability were updated with the new search engine results. The company also began to sell search engine results to other businesses for display on their websites. Unfortunately, their partnership with Google ended at that point, and the two former allies became fierce rivals.

Search Assist (2007): In October 2007, Yahoo! Search was changed to match the revamped Yahoo! home page with a more contemporary look. Search Assist was also included, which delivers real-time query recommendations and related concepts as you search.

Yahoo! Search BOSS (2008): Yahoo! Search announced the launch of a new service named Yahoo! Search BOSS (“Build your Own Search Engine”). Through this feature, Developers can leverage the Yahoo! method for indexing information and photos to design their own customized search engine. 

Bing (2010): Microsoft announced an agreement in which it would take over the functional operation of Yahoo! Search and form the Microsoft Search Alliance. This joint venture would sell advertising on both Yahoo! Search and Bing. In October 2010, all Yahoo! sponsored ad clients were transferred to Microsoft adCenter (now Bing Ads). 

Yelp (2014): Yahoo announced a collaboration with Yelp to incorporate Yelp’s reviews and user-contributed photographs into Yahoo! Search (as Bing had previously done).

Bing modified (2015): The Microsoft agreement was changed in April 2015, mandating Bing results on just the “majority” of desktop traffic, allowing Yahoo to engage in non-exclusive partnerships for search services on mobile platforms and the rest of desktop traffic. In addition, the agreement allows any party to terminate the contract with four months’ notice. In October 2015, Yahoo and Google announced a deal for Google to supply advertising, Search, and image search services to Yahoo Search through the end of 2018. As a result, Yahoo! Search is now again powered by Bing as of October 2021.

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Frequently Asked Questions

What is Yahoo?

Yahoo! is a search engine and a directory of World Wide Web.

Who owns Yahoo?

Yahoo is owned by Apollo Global Management, Inc. The company headquarter is located in Sunnyvale, CA.

Who developed Yahoo?

Yahoo! was founded by Jerry Yang and David Filo and was initially named “Jerry and David’s Guide to the World Wide Web”.

When was Yahoo created?

Yahoo was created in January 1994.

What happened to Yahoo?

The company missed two great opportunities to acquire Google. They additionally incurred a 500 million users’ data breach, and many other factors that contributed to the downfall of Yahoo.


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