Yahoo is thinking about giving the underlying code to Yahoo Mail, to independent programmers to create new services. This move will push the development of thousands of new e-mail applications built not only by Yahoo engineers but by outside companies and individuals. This will allow people to make custom versions of the basic interface, or look, of e-mail.
“Yahoo is a very large company but we can’t build every applications that a user might want,” Dickerson said in an interview at Yahoo headquarters. “You can imagine tens of thousands of niche applications (springing) from Yahoo Mail.”
If the other service providers also open up their codes then this could allow a “mashup” to be created that permits users to simultaneously read Yahoo Mail, Google’s Gmail and Microsoft’s Hotmail from the same browser window rather than forcing users to sign into each e-mail system separately.
Yahoo Mail’s code will be generally available later in 2006.