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Here's the new Yahoo! Maps upgrade: It's nicer to look at and easier to manipulate. There are a great many features here.

There's no more need to enter an address first to get a map. Now you can do a category search starting from a map interface. This was one feature that Google Maps really had over Yahoo! — until now. Yahoo! has also made it possible to host its maps on third-party sites. This will also make Yahoo! Maps more competitive.

Check out local events on a map — an especially interesting marriage of mapping and local search.

Journalists typically ask what part of this mapping craze is novelty and what part is utility. I say that novelty becomes utility as maps get better and consumers discover they can use them for more things. And they will.

Here's more from the Yahoo! Search Blog and SiliconBeat.


Here's a nice overview from Chris Sherman at Search Engine Watch. Here's the Yahoo! press release.

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