Out with the old. Out with the new.
Yahoo’s latest round of spring cleaning includes the shut down of one of the web’s oldest search services (AltaVista) and one of the newest (Yahoo Axis), along with 10 other Yahoo products and services.
Yahoo says AltaVista will be shutting down on July 8th.
AltaVista launched way back in 1995, when you practically had to walk uphill in the snow — both ways — in order to find anything on the internet. It was the first full-text web search product and became a popular online destination. I remember it being scary good for that era. But several ownership changes hurt AltaVista and, of course, Google came along and became the web’s dominant search engine.
Our related story today has more on Yahoo’s former glory days: A Eulogy For AltaVista, The Google Of Its Time.
Goodbye Yahoo Axis
Much sooner than that — in fact, today — is the shutdown of a much newer search product: Yahoo Axis. Axis was a combination browser/search/mobile product and, in using that combo to describe it, I may be explaining why it never really caught on: Axis was probably trying to do much.
Yahoo launched Axis in May 2012. It was primarily built for mobile devices, but a browser plugin brought the experience to desktops, too. And Yahoo touted Axis’ ability to offer “seamless search” across multiple devices/platforms. Search results in Axis were highly visual with page previews and rich imagery.
In its announcement, Yahoo said Axis was “the first time the search experience evolves from a destination to a companion” and said it was “the first browser to really change the game.”
The Axis app will continue to work, but Yahoo won’t support it going forward. The browser plugin is dead as of today.
Other Yahoo Products Shuttered
There are a number of other Yahoo products that are getting the axe. Here’s the list, along with the shutdown dates:
- Yahoo Browser Plus (today)
- Citizen Sports (today)
- Yahoo WebPlayer (June 30, 2013)
- FoxyTunes (July 1, 2013)
- Yahoo RSS Alerts (July 1, 2013)
- Yahoo Neighbors (July 8, 2013)
- Yahoo Stars India (July 25, 2013)
- Yahoo Downloads (July 31, 2013)
- Yahoo Local API (September 28, 2013)
- Yahoo Term Extraction API (September 28, 2013)
If you’re a user of any of those products, see Yahoo’s announcement for some additional details that might be good to know.