Review: Yahoo! Messenger (Mobile)

I’m a Yahoo holdout—more specifically Yahoo Messenger. I’ve been using the messenger since about 2000. I hung with Messenger even as better competing messengers were out around that time such as Windows Live Messenger and AIM.

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When we finally got to the original smartphone app and were able to use touch screen, it made that mobile app ever better. It was extremely similar in appearance and functionality to the desktop app, but compared to other mobile versions of messengers it was a bit outdated appearance wise.

Review: Yahoo Messenger (Mobile)

This brings us to Yahoo’s new Messenger. It has a new, clean look. Gone is the yellow and purple color scheme and desktop app-like layout. What we have now is a scheme that is similar to modern mobile apps. Yahoo caught up.

While the Messenger looks nice, it’s not as reliable as it was before…not even close really. The previous mobile Messenger could get live messages that were just sent. It worked how messengers are supposed to work. The new Yahoo Messenger doesn’t do that. In the week I’ve been using the app I either get live messages without notification or the messages pop up 30 minutes to an hour later.

I only know that much because I usually have the desktop app open as well. The mobile app can also cause some confusion since it automatically doesn’t show offline contacts. While it keeps the contacts panel free from the clutter of a lot of offline names, the search function doesn’t exactly help in finding contacts. The web app does this as well.

Review: Yahoo Messenger (Mobile)

Fortunately if you’ve contacted that person before using the new app, the names and related conversation will remain in the conversation history panel, so you should be able to always find that person even if they’re offline.

YM does have a pro and it’s that it allows you to delete sent messages. You can also like messages, but being able to delete stuff you didn’t want to send is the bigger of the two features.


Yahoo Messenger isn’t what I’d use as my primary mobile app. I don’t use it as my main app now. It operates like any other messenger, but not being able to get fresh messages live just isn’t going to work. If you need to use YM, use the desktop app. Sure it’s dated, but it works and it’s extremely dependable. The mail browser is pretty barebones, but is dependable as well. If you need a mobile messenger and still want to make use of Yahoo, then use Trillian. RATING:


Starting with Kabir News in 2013, James has focused on tech, gaming, and entertainment. When not writing, he enjoys catching up on sci-fi and horror shows and comics. He can be followed on Twitter @MetalSwift.

One Comment

  1. Alexandra says:

    The new Yahoo mobile messenger doesn t even come close to the functionality of the old one. You can’t even see if people are online or offline, it looks like a toy for teenagers and it’s totally unreliable. Just look at the endless stream of one star reviews in the google app store. Luckily there’s still the desktop – now if Yahoo will just bring the classic mobile app back!

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