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Yahoo CEO Mayer unveils mobile-application development tools

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Yahoo! Inc. Chief Executive Officer Marissa Mayer unveiled a suite of development tools for mobile applications that integrate its own advertising services with features it acquired with analytics startup Flurry Inc.

[SAN FRANCISCO] Yahoo! Inc. Chief Executive Officer Marissa Mayer unveiled a suite of development tools for mobile applications that integrate its own advertising services with features it acquired with analytics startup Flurry Inc.

The suite is designed to help outside app developers add marketing spots, including search and video, along with native ads, the promotions that appear among other content, Ms Mayer said Thursday at the first Yahoo Mobile Developer Conference in San Francisco. The new tools enable better tracking and understanding of mobile app users, and offer new ways to share data with other software makers.

"The opportunity in mobile is really huge, but we know there's so much more," she said. "Mobile will get even bigger with time." Ms Mayer, who joined the Sunnyvale, California-based company from rival Google Inc. in 2012, is investing in mobile services as more consumers access the Web, videos and other content from smartphones and tablets. In 2014, US$1.26 billion of the company's revenue came through wireless devices, bringing in more than 25 per cent of total sales.

Yahoo bought Flurry, an analytics and advertising startup, for about US$300 million last year.

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Ms Mayer is under pressure to show more progress in her turnaround effort. For the fourth quarter, Yahoo reported sales, excluding revenue shared with partner websites, fell 1.8 per cent to US$1.18 billion. For the first quarter, Yahoo forecast sales of US$1.02 billion to US$1.06 billion, short of analysts' average US$1.1 billion projection, according to data compiled by Bloomberg.

Shares of Yahoo rose 1.7 per cent to US$44.37 at the close in New York. The stock climbed 25 per cent in 2014.

Though the company has failed to produce much revenue growth, Yahoo stock has benefited from its stake of about 15 per cent in Alibaba Group Holding Ltd, the largest Chinese e- commerce company. Mayer last month said Yahoo plans a tax-free spinoff of its stake in Alibaba, a move that was cheered by some investors.

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