Yahoo Search is currently running far behind Google and Bing on mobile devices, but CEO Marissa Mayer wants to change that.
In her first one-on-one interview since being named Yahoo CEO, Mayer talked with Bloomberg Television about the future of the company, and how it can compete in mobile.
"Given that we do not have mobile hardware, a mobile OS, a browser, or a social network, how are we going to compete?" Mayer said during a talk with Bloomberg's Erik Schatzker at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland. "I think that the big piece here is that it really allows us to partner."
Mayer pointed to the company's work with Apple and Google on their mobile operating systems, as well as what she called a strong partnership with Facebook. "We're able to work with some of these players that have a lot of strength in order to bolster our user experience that we offer on the Yahoo site," Mayer said.
The move to mobile may not be too much of a stretch, the CEO said. "The nice thing at Yahoo is that we have all the content that people want on their phones. We have these daily habits," she said, citing checking email, weather, and news, as well as sharing photos and playing games.
"I think whenever you have a daily habit and [are] providing a lot of value around it, there is opportunity not only [to] provide that value to the end user but to create a great business."
Mayer told Bloomberg TV that features like pinpointing location (as in checking in on Foursquare) can serve as so much more than a simple shout-out to local restaurants.
"If you actually know where people are and where they check in, there are all sorts of sophisticated and interesting things that you can go on to do," she said. "So I think there are amazing technologies like that."
Mayer took her seat as Yahoo's CEO in July, and in the months since, she has been "genuinely pleased and surprised," she told Bloomberg, boasting about Yahoo's "very nice, really competent, pleasant people" and the talent that resides within the company.
But there's always more to accomplish, and Mayer has her eye on personalisation — especially image and voice recognition and translation — as well as increasing privacy measures.