Yahoo expected to launch messaging app at New York City press event

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Yahoo is planning to hold a mid-week press event in New York City, where it will probably announce a new messaging app, according to claims made on Tuesday.

The company is at least intending to show off a new consumer product, sources told Re/code. At first the same people added only that it would have a mobile focus, but Re/code reporter Kara Swisher later mentioned the messaging connection on Twitter.

Since 2012, current Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer has been trying to overhaul and revitalize the company, which by her arrival had become stagnant in its advertising and content businesses. In 2013 for instance Mayer orchestrated the acquisition of blog service Tumblr, in a deal worth $1.1 billion.

The launch of a mobile-oriented messaging app could put Yahoo in direct competition with Facebook Messenger, which is available across iOS, Android, Windows, and the Web. Facebook is actively trying to turn Messenger into a platform with things like a third-party API and even shopping and money transfer functions.

A Yahoo app would presumably launch first on iOS and/or Android, the two most popular mobile platforms. Facebook typically prefers introducing apps on iOS and then migrating to Android.

Yahoo still offers Yahoo Messenger for both desktop and mobile, but the platform has become marginal as alternatives like Facebook, WhatsApp, iMessage, Skype, and Hangouts have taken hold.

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