Yahoo’s new Axis browser just made its debut. Reviews for the mobile app have been favorable which is consistent with Yahoo’s goal, which Ethan Batraski describes as having a “mobile-first focus.”
Despite the mostly positive feedback, however, there have been negative reports regarding the Axis (News - Alert) version of the desk-top plug-in. But because the browser is still relatively new, the flaw could be corrected before any serious damage occurs. The favorable reviews are based on the same criteria of any new service offered from technology-based companies: How does this product measure up in comparison to its competitors, and what makes it stand out?
One of the reasons why the AXIS browser is more ideal for mobile search is that your options are presented in thumbnails versus a list of links that can be less friendly to maneuver through. The Associated Press states that, “All the major search engines are adopting new formats intended to make it easier for users to find information without clicking through to page after page.” This places the Axis ahead of the game in that respect. Google’s (News - Alert) Knowledge Graph is intended to make searches more efficient by highlighting the most potentially relevant data in a box to the right, but this might not be the most efficient means of retrieving data from a mobile device.
Many of the positive reviews come from the perspective of using the browser on an Apple (News - Alert)-based device like the iPhone. Last Wednesday was when the app was officially launched in Apple stores. Rafe Needleman from CNET raves about how amazing Axis functions on his iPad. The search process is more streamlined with AXIS because it works on intuition, alleviating the need to go back to the search screen when expanding on a search. Needleman said, “After only a few minutes using it I thought, Why hasn't Google done this yet? It's that good.”
Many of the Axis app’s bad traits can probably be attributed to its newness. For example, a reporter for the L.A. Times noticed that although users can share, Facebook is not included as an option in the drop-down that consists of Pinterest and Twitter (News - Alert).
Also, Tech Week Europe reports of a “worrying security flaw” found in the Chrome version of the plug in. The Chrome extension does not effectively obscure the private key certificate, “meaning that it is vulnerable to being forged and cloned into fake extensions that could track passwords and cookies.” Also on the list, was Yahoo’s initial oversight in publishing the browser’s terms and conditions.
The L.A. Times reports that Yahoo’s targeted demographic is 18 to 35-year-old men. So women wouldn’t appreciate a more efficient search tool as well?
Edited by Carrie Schmelkin