Monday, September 17, 2012

Yahoo employees to receive smartphones of choice, including the iPhone 5: Mayer

Yahoo employees are getting their choice of smartphone, including the iPhone 5. New Yahoo CEO Marissa Mayer, late of Google, made the announcement on Friday in an internal memo obtained by Business Insider.

JibJab eCards
Apple announced the iPhone 5 on Wednesday, and perhaps Mayer was waiting for that announcement before making her own. A few weeks ago, it was reported that Mayer was "considering" such providing a new iPhone or Android phone to all employees.

She's gone further than that, even giving them the choice of a Nokia Windows Phone device.

Yahoo is calling the program "Yahoo! Smart Phones, Smart Fun!" With the program, Yahoo employees will have a choice of phones: the iPhone 5 (iOS), the Samsung Galaxy S3 (Android), the HTC One X (Android), the HTC EVO 4G LTE (Android), or the Nokia Lumia 920 (Windows Phone 8).

Yahoo is also going to pay its employees' phone bills. The program applies to both full- and part-time employees. As you might expect, this isn't just about fun: Yahoo is also going to discontinue IT support for Blackberry phones. These phones are expected to be used for business, as well as pleasure.

In addition, and just as importantly, the new phones will allow Yahoo employees to use the phones that Yahoo users are using.

Here's what the memo said:
We have a very exciting update to share with you today - we are announcing Yahoo! Smart Phones, Smart Fun! As of today, Yahoo is moving off of blackberries as our corporate phones and on to smartphones in 22 countries. A few weeks ago, we said that we would look into smartphone penetration rates globally and take those rates into account when deciding on corporate phones. Ideally, we'd like our employees to have devices similar to our users, so we can think and work as the majority of our users do.

Moving forward, we'll offer you a choice of devices as well as provide monthly plans for the data and phone.

The smartphone choices that we are including in the program are:
  • Apple iPhone 5
  • Android:
    • - Samsung Galaxy S3
    • - HTC One X
    • - HTC EVO 4G LTE
  •  Windows Phone 8:
    • - Nokia Lumia 920
We're getting started right away and taking orders starting now.
The assumption is that there will be no restrictions on carrier selection.

Of those, the 920 is the further out, in terms of retail launch; the Android phones have already launched and the iPhone 5 launches on Friday.

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