Slick chatting

Yahoo for Android possesses most of the ingredients necessary to make a great IM experience.

Instant messaging may be a fun, convenient way to communicate, but how well these chat apps are structured is serious business. Luckily, Yahoo for Android possesses most of the ingredients necessary to make a great IM experience.

It's visually lush, not to mention easy to navigate, to update a status message, and to add new contacts. Crucially, there are also multiple ways to launch a conversation, and the app offers a combination of audio alerts and visual cues to help manage simultaneous chat conversations.

In addition to basic chatting, Yahoo has made sure to include favorite Yahoo features like avatars, Yahoo's classic emoticons (plus a few extras), and file transfers, thereby successfully avoiding a user uproar. We're also impressed that Yahoo included an easy menu for formatting text within a chat message.

Yahoo has also attempted to integrate its Messenger app with the separate Yahoo Mail app. Tapping the Mail button in the app's menu will prompt you to download Mail if you don't have it already. If you do, tapping Mail in Yahoo Messenger opens your Yahoo in-box.

Though there are some customizations, like grouping offline contacts and switching on or off notification sounds, there could easily be more. Take, for instance, the skinning options of the desktop version, so those less enamored than Yahoo of its signature royal purples can opt for a green, blue, or orange skin. We might also separate between turning on or off the sounds you make when you send a message and those you hear when you receive one.

In the meantime, we wouldn't hesitate recommending Yahoo Messenger for Android users to communicate with their Yahoo friends.

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