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Yahoo in a New York state of mind

Internet pioneer Yahoo is in the midst of a series of transitions. One of the most significant is its slow shift of emphasis from California to New York City.

Just after the announcement of its newest purchase – blogging site Tumblr for 1.1 billion dollars – Yahoo boss Marissa Mayer broke the news of the company’s decision to shift its New York office space.

Tumblr already had its headquarters in the metropolis. Yahoo also already had 500 employees in the city.

It now plans to bring them all together in the former offices of the New York Times on 43rd Street, near Times Square.

”We just signed the rental contract,” said Mayer during a visit to New York. She noted that the office had space for up to 200 more employees, which would likely be put to use soon.

At the same time, Yahoo has announced some changes to a long-time subsidiary – photo-sharing website Flickr, sprucing up its website, releasing a new app for Google’s Android operating system and expanding the range of services.

Users will now get 1 terabyte of storage space as a standard option, enough for more than 500,000 digital photographs at normal resolutions. By paying 50 dollars a year, customers can opt for an ad-free version of the site.

For 500 dollars a year, customers double their storage space.

Flickr was one of the first photo-sharing platforms to gain widespread popularity, though internet users have been moving away to newer competitors like Instagram in recent times, or opting to share photos over Facebook and Twitter.

Mayer, who took over at Yahoo during the summer of 2012, is trying to refresh the internet veteran, which has been coming under considerable pressure from Google and Facebook, amid a series of previous management problems.

Yahoo has its headquarters in Sunnyvale, in Silicon Valley. It employs a total of about 11,300 people.

In order to not scare existing Tumbler customers, Yahoo has made clear it plans to give its new subsidiary significant independence.

Yahoo’s logo won’t even appear on Tumblr’s website.

Mayer has promised not to ”screw up” Tumblr.

She made the vow via a new Tumblr blog. There are currently about 109 million Tumblr blogs maintained by users of the site. (dpa)