Yahoo said today it would set up a large office in Times Square and had launched a major update of Flickr.
“For a while Yahoo has been looking for a home here in New York. We recently took out the lease on 229 West 43rd Street, right here in Times Square,” CEO Marissa Mayer said in a press event in Times Square.
The offices will house Yahoo’s 500-count staff in New York and leaves room for 200 new hires. The newly acquired staff of Tumblr will remain in their Union Square headquarters.
On the same day that the company announced its first major acquisition in years, Yahoo launched a major upgrade to its most famous failed acquisition of its heyday: Flickr.
The upgrade offers a terabyte of free photo storage to all users and full resolution uploads and displays by default. The company is shuttering Flickr Pro products, which offered additional storage. The website also moved to a Pinterest-like layout, which fills the page with photos without cropping. A full-screen slideshow sharing option is also available.
“It’s heart-stoppingly beautiful. It’s all about the photos,” said Mayer.
The update is live as of moments ago, and nearly a dozen billboards in Time Square have been lit up with Flickr advertising.
The company also launched an Android app to match its iOS app.
“When I came to Yahoo the Internet petitioned me to make Flickr awesome again, and I do think Flickr is awesome again today. But it wasn’t me who made it awesome. I really want to thank the team,” Mayer said.
Of the Tumblr acquisition, Mayer said the talks began as conversation about potential partnerships, but turned to acquisition talks as the companies saw how they could “operate independently but sort of complement each other.”
Yahoo has no plans to restrict content on Tumblr despite the fact that Tumblr hosts some adult content, Mayer said.
“That said, we think it’s important to have great user tools like ‘not safe for work’ so people who are looking for [adult] content can find it but those who aren’t won’t stumble on it.”
Ed note: We followed the event by a livestream, which crashed no fewer than 10 times. So Yahoo isn’t quite in the clear yet.
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