While we all focused our attention on Google’s mobile phone efforts, Yahoo continued to make deals with network operators in Asia–expanding its OneSearch platform to nine new networks.
The Yahoo partnership deals to be unveiled on Tuesday at an industry trade fair in Macau include three Indian carriers: Aircel Ltd, BPL Mobile and BSNL; two Malaysian carriers: DiGi Telecommunications Sdn Bhd and PT Excelcomindo Pratama Tbk two Indonesian carriers: Hutch 3 and PT Indosat Tbk, along with PCCW Mobile HK Ltd of Hong Kong and Starhub Ltd of Singapore.
Reuters reports that Yahoo has also launched a new service called Yahoo Go in traditional Chinese in Taiwan.
"Those 16 deals will give us roughly 40 percent coverage of all subscribers in those countries," Yahoo’s top mobile executive, Marco Boerries, said in a phone interview.
Yahoo’s goal is to achieve more than 50% mobile market share and they might just do it. It’s interesting that Google’s gambling on its new Open Handset Alliance–which has yet to produce a single phone–while Yahoo’s focusing on doing deals directly with the network operators. I wonder who will win out. I guess it depends on whether mobile operators fully embrace the Open Handset Alliance or, as I suspect, will always give preference to their own direct partnerships.