Yahoo Gets Into the Browser World With Axis

With its new Axis browser plug-in, Yahoo is making a move into the browser space and showing the struggling company still has some fight in it.

Despite an unsettling period surrounding its former CEO and the naming of a new one, Yahoo is looking ahead by making a splash into the browser world with its new Axis plug-in.

Yahoo Axis aims to be smarter and faster than other browsers, the company said. The Axis plug-in enables users to enter their search, see and interact with visual results, all without ever leaving the page they are on. Axis integrates with a user€™s favorite desktop browser and automatically connects their online experiences across multiple devices.

Axis is available for download across iOS devices and as a desktop plug-in for HTML5-enabled browsers. The new Yahoo Axis App is available for free from the App Store on iPhone, iPad and iPod touch or at

"Our search strategy is predicated on two core beliefs€”one, that people want answers, not links and two, that consumer-facing search is ripe for innovative disruption," said Shashi Seth, senior vice president of Connections at Yahoo, in a statement. "With Axis, we have re-defined and re-architected the search and browse experience from the ground up."

Axis gives people instant answers and visual previews so they can continuously discover and explore content without interruption. Axis' sleek design keeps people moving forward rather than constantly returning to a page of endless blue links. Once on a search results site, Axis also lets people simply swipe or click to the next result. Because search results are saved on Yahoo€™s servers, Axis also allows people to move seamlessly across devices. Upon downloading Axis, people can start a search on their computer, flip through the results while out on their iPhone, and finish the search at home on their iPad. Content can be easily shared by email, Pinterest and Twitter.

After signing in with Yahoo, Google or Facebook credentials, Axis centralizes online lives with a customizable Home Page that provides direct access to their favorite sites, saved articles and bookmarks across all devices where Axis has been downloaded.

A Yahoo blog post on Axis further described the personalization:

Axis also includes a personalized home page that contains your most recently visited sites, bookmarks and articles you plan to read later. This personalized home page stays with you across your desktop, iPad and iPhone, keeping what€™s important to you in one easy, centralized spot. No matter what device you started on, you can easily pick up where you left off when you switch devices.

On iPhone, iPad and iPod touch, Axis serves as a standalone mobile browser app. On the desktop, Axis is a browser plug-in that works with Firefox 7+, Safari v5+, Internet Explorer 9 and all versions of Chrome.

Axis is built on the Yahoo Cocktails mobile development platform, which is designed for creating personalized products that are built for connected devices first. Comprised of Mojito, an open source JavaScript MVC framework and Manhattan, a cloud-based hosted environment, Cocktails is a blend of open, standard Web technologies including HTML5, CSS3, JavaScript and Node.JS.

Yahoo's move into the browser space comes on the heels of a period of turmoil where the company named Ross Levinsohn interim CEO after ousting former CEO Scott Thompson amid a scandal over his resume and educational background.

Meanwhile, Google is sitting pretty in the search space, with about 66 percent of the market. Microsoft€™s Bing holds more than 15 percent and Yahoo has 13.5 percent. In the browser space, eWEEK recently reported that Google€™s Chrome squeaked ahead of Microsoft€™s Internet Explorer for the full week of May 14 through 20, making it the world€™s most popular browser for a full week for the first time, according to data from StatCounter.