I'm a Christian, a designer, and a gadget fan who lives in Cheltenham, UK.

This is my blog, a creative outlet to mess around and play with as well as a place that logs my thoughts and inspirations.

Address Book and Yahoo

When Apple announced the iPhone back in Janu­ary one of the fea­tures they touted was a free Push IMAP Yahoo email account to all iPhone cus­tom­ers. Since iPhone launched this little fea­ture has seen very little press cov­er­age, if any, but it is import­ant in under­stand­ing why Address Book in Leo­pard syncs with the Yahoo Mail address book.
Since Yahoo do not allow IMAP access to their email accounts it seems they are envisaging a world where people access their Yahoo email account in two ways:
1. Through the iPhones Mail application
2. Through their web browser on a desktop.
Work­ing in this man­ner will ensure the mail­box remains in “sync” across the two envir­on­ments. Any new mail read on the iPhone will be marked as read in Yahoo and vice versa, effect­ively ensur­ing you are using the Yahoo web inter­face as your desktop client.
This presents one prob­lem. The Yahoo web inter­face does­n’t inter­act with the Address Book found in OS X, which provides the iPhone with it’s con­tacts. How can the two envir­on­ments, share the same con­tacts in order to work as required?
Enter the new Leo­pard fea­ture for Address Book, the abil­ity to sync with Yahoo Mail’s address book. This solves the prob­lem presen­ted earli­er by ensur­ing the iPhone address book remains in sync with the Yahoo Mail address book. All in all, a good solu­tion to the prob­lem, as well as being a nice free altern­at­ive to .Mac address book sync.
This leaves me ask­ing why are people moan­ing about it? I can think of only two reasons.
1. Since Yahoo don’t allow IMAP access to the mail account on a desktop people don’t use the free Push IMAP as their source of email on the iPhone. This leaves them won­der­ing why it’s there.
2. Not many people use Yahoo mail. If they want a web based email account they turn to GMail for the solu­tion and so the option to sync with Google is more valuable.
It presents an inter­est­ing debate, and has me won­der­ing if Yahoo plan to allow IMAP access to their web­mail applic­a­tion or if there is anoth­er reas­on behind it. Are Apple aware of their “alli­ance” with Google and don’t want to freeze Yahoo out? Or am I miss­ing something? 

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