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The New Yahoo Mail: 5 Things You Need to Know

Do you Yahoo? For a large number of email users, the answer’s still a solid “Yes.” Good old Yahoo Mail started to feel bloated, cluttered and, well, old now that streamlined services like Outlook.com are the norm, though – which makes today’s introduction of a new-look Yahoo Mail an especially welcome change. Here are the five things you need to know about the new Yahoo Mail.

The Emperor’s new clothes – Yahoo overhauled its email clients to cut the clutter and give them a fresh, clean look. The service places your messages front and center, with folders segregated to a small left-side pane (which is hidden on mobile devices). Sure, it looks like every other webmail service, but that’s a good thing.

Seamless design – Yahoo updated its Android and iOS apps as well as its Web client to bring that new look to every possible Yahoo Mail entry point, creating a unified experience that stays (basically) the same, no matter what platform you’re on.

Better, faster, stronger – In the blog post announcing the update, Marissa Mayer says that the email app was redesigned “with speed in mind.” Our brief fiddling with the Web client certainly feels faster than before. The company told The Verge that the Android app was rewritten from the ground up to increase speed while simultaneously using 20 to 40 percent less battery.

There’s a Windows 8 app! – Microsoft’s new platform may not have many apps yet, but now you can count Yahoo Mail amongst the crowd. The Windows 8 Yahoo Mail app blends the service’s new look with Microsoft’s familiar Modern interface.

You might not have it yet – The updated Web client is being rolled out gradually, though Mayer says that “Over the next few days, most mail users will begin to experience the new Web version of Yahoo! Mail.”

Mayer also says that this update is "just the beginning." Hopefully she means it; over the past few years, Yahoo Mail has seemed content to stay safe while such services as Outlook.com and Gmail constantly push out new features and updates. This overhaul is a refreshing step in the right direction for Yahoo.