RealTime IT News

Yahoo Mail Gives a Gig

Yahoo will provide users of its free Web e-mail service 1 gigabyte of storage, four times its current offering, equaling the storage capacity of rival Google's popular Gmail, said Andy Spillane, vice president of Yahoo Mail.

"We know that people are using their Yahoo Mail accounts to send and store more attachments, photos and important messages than ever before," he said in a statement. "By providing 1GB of storage for free, we continue with our eight-year tradition of making Yahoo Mail an even more essential part of peoples lives."

The upgrade from 250MB to 1GB will begin in late April and will include improved antivirus protection for the free e-mail service, according to the company. The protection will give users the ability to remove viruses from attachments. That feature was previously available only for a fee.

Yahoo and Microsoft's Hotmail have both increased the storage limits for their free e-mail services after Google launched its Gmail service a year ago.

The moves in the escalating war of free e-mail are an attempt to keep users within a company network, which increases exposure to their online content and advertising.

To keep pace with the growing field of Web-based e-mail competitors, AOL kick-started a beta of its Web-based e-mail service, called "AOL Mail on the Web", which will be available for free some time this year.