Internet Productivity

Gmail vs. Yahoo New Mail: Which Is the Best in Class?

Sandy Writtenhouse 18-01-2018

Arguments over which email service is best can get as heated as which browser comes out on top. Mobile email clients aside, Gmail and Outlook are still higher on the list than Yahoo Mail when it comes to usage. But, Yahoo is still pushing to improve their mail service with backend optimizations, enhanced features, and the new paid ad-free Yahoo Mail Pro.


Are Yahoo’s efforts fruitless? Will their attempts gain them more users? For most, it comes down to what Yahoo New Mail has to offer The New Yahoo Mail Is Actually Rather Good Yahoo Mail has been given a major makeover. It's now cleaner, faster, and more able to compete with the likes of Gmail and Outlook. No, seriously. Read More as opposed to classic Yahoo Mail and how the new version compares with other services. So, let’s explore how Yahoo New Mail compares to the wildly-used Gmail.

Classic Yahoo Mail vs. New Mail

First things first, we’ll take a look at classic Yahoo Mail versus their New Mail. The most obvious difference is the appearance.

Classic Yahoo Mail

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Yahoo New Mail

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Appearance Differences

At first glance, you will see a few things that stand out in Yahoo New Mail:

  • Wider top navigation includes links to other Yahoo apps within a button (just like Gmail) rather than across the very top.
  • Buttons for Messenger, Contacts, Calendar, and Notepad are now on the right. The Settings button has been moved here as well.
  • The Compose email option is a large blue button.
  • A Views section has been added to the left-hand navigation that includes Photos, Documents, and a few other items we will explore later.
  • An overall less-cluttered look and feel.

These may not be huge changes, but they do give Yahoo Mail a more modern appearance. And you can quickly identify which version of Yahoo Mail you are using.

Feature Differences

Of course, with a “new mail” premise comes new features. Here is a brief list of offerings that Yahoo New Mail has that classic Yahoo Mail does not:

  • Views section for message and item organization
  • Better responsiveness and stability
  • Different themes

On the flip side, Yahoo New Mail is lacking in some features that classic Yahoo Mail still offers and here is a list of those (as of this writing).

Another difference in features between Yahoo New Mail and classic Yahoo Mail is regarding Messenger, Contacts, and similar items.


In classic Yahoo Mail, Messenger opens in a convenient popup window. This meanss you never have to leave your inbox to chat. But in Yahoo New Mail, Messenger opens in its own new tab.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Also, even if you use Yahoo New Mail, your Calendar, Contacts, and Notepad still open in classic Yahoo Mail. So, when you click one of those buttons, a new tab will open displaying the item in the old mail version.

For most, these feature differences are more significant than the appearance differences. This is especially true for those who will lose features using Yahoo New Mail. If losing a specific feature is unacceptable, you can switch back to classic Yahoo Mail:

  1. Click the Settings (gear icon) button in the top-right corner.
  2. Click the Switch to classic mail link at the bottom of the popup window.
  3. Select a reason and enter a comment. You must do this to move forward.
  4. Click the Switch back to classic Mail.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Gmail vs. Yahoo New Mail Features

Now that you know the differences between the Yahoo Mail versions, it’s time to get down to business with a comparison between Gmail and Yahoo New Mail.

Message options are pretty standard for both with font formatting, file attachments, and emojis. As are things like sorting your inbox, starring messages, and archiving emails.

Here are just some of the other differences and similarities based on the new features offered in Yahoo New Mail.


Inbox Styles

With Gmail, you can choose from Comfortable, Cozy, or Compact for your view. This basically changes the density of your inbox (the spacing between messages). You can also select an inbox style that displays important, unread, or starred emails first along with a priority inbox option.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Yahoo New Mail offers three different layouts: List, Right, and Bottom as well as Small, Medium, or Large message spacing. This gives you more flexibility. If you like Gmail’s list view, you can switch to it in Yahoo. But if you prefer to see your email list on the left and individual message selections on the right, for example, you’ll want Yahoo.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Inbox Customizations

Both Gmail and Yahoo New Mail give you simple ways to personalize the look and feel with Themes.

In Gmail, click Settings > Themes > Set Theme to view your options. Pick a photo, upload one of your own, or just use a bit of color.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

In Yahoo New Mail, click Settings to see your options. Then, pick your theme and a Light, Medium, or Dark appearance. Unfortunately, it does not look like you can upload your own photo at this time.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Automatic Organization

Gmail provides tabs at the top for Primary, Social, Promotions, Updates, and Forums. You can add and remove these categories, except for Primary. But they are helpful because Gmail automatically pops your messages into them as they arrive.

  • Primary is your main area for person-to-person emails.
  • Social contains messages from social media sites and dating services.
  • Promotions holds deals, sales, and marketing emails.
  • Updates is for automatic emails you receive like confirmations and statements.
  • Forums is there for discussion group and message board emails.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Yahoo New Mail organizes your messages a little differently with its Views feature. This area is in your left-hand navigation with your folders. Views categorizes your emails using Photos, Documents, Travel, and Coupons. However, Yahoo does this in another way and it does not appear that you can remove categories in Views at this time.

  • Photos and Documents hold those two types of items when you receive them via email.
  • Travel includes tabs for Upcoming and Past flights, plus an Emails area for all travel-related messages.
  • Coupons provides you with just that: coupons for stores from your messages, all in one spot.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Category and Feature Winners

The features listed so far compare what is offered in the enhanced Yahoo Mail called Yahoo New Mail with what currently exists in Gmail as a counterpart feature. But would it be fair to choose a winner without looking at unchanged features?

Yes, Yahoo New Mail is a new and improved email service. However, many features from the classic version carry over and remain the same. How do those compare to what Gmail offers? Let’s see if there is a clear winner in each category.

Email Filters

Yahoo New Mail lets you create filters for incoming emails based on who they are from or to, who is copied, what is in the subject line or in the email body. You can then have those messages automatically moved to a folder. Helpful? Of course. But Gmail gives you more.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Gmail filters 10 Email Problems You Can Solve with Gmail Filters An overflowing inbox driving you crazy? Do you want to through your inbox faster than ever? Try some of these brilliant Gmail filters to see the difference. Read More are one of the service’s most robust features. Not only can you filter with the options Yahoo offers, but you can also filter by if there is an attachment, the size (greater or less than) of the attachment, and eliminate chat conversations from the filter. In addition, you can mark, categorize, label, star, forward, or delete emails with the criteria you select.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

It’s also important to note that classic Yahoo Mail provides a fast option to “filter emails like this” from the More (three-dot icon) menu on your message. Unfortunately, Yahoo New Mail does not.

Add-Ons and Extensions

Gmail has a marketplace that lets you use add-ons to connect helpful services like Trello, QuickBooks, and Asana. Granted, you will not find hundreds of add-ons for Gmail, but for Yahoo there are zero.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

The farthest Yahoo goes with add-ons are its browser extensions. And Gmail wins here too with many for the major browsers that help in a variety of ways to keep you productive 7 Productivity Gmail Extensions for Your Browser If you use Gmail on the web, these browser extensions can boost your productivity. Reduce time spent in your inbox and do more of what's really important. Read More .

Labels and Tags

If you are a Gmail power user The Power User Guide to Gmail This free Gmail Guide is for those of you who already use Gmail as an email client and want to take maximum advantage of its many productivity features. Read More , then you already know about the convenient Label feature. You can create and edit labels so that incoming emails are tagged for things like Work, Bills, or Blogs. This is a terrific feature for organizing messages and quick glances at your inbox for specific emails.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

Surprisingly, Yahoo New Mail does not offer a label or tag feature and neither does the classic version. You can move a message into folder, and as mentioned above, do so automatically using a filter, or you can star a message. But sadly, marking an email in your inbox with tag is apparently still not an option.

Mobile Email Apps

Both Gmail and Yahoo offer mail apps for mobile devices for free. The exception is the new Yahoo Mail Pro which is a paid app just like the online service.

The apps are responsive, offer similar features, and are simple to use. Gmail offers quick replies which are convenient when responding to messages. On the other hand, Yahoo Mail offers Smart Views to easily see your Photos, Documents, and Travel items, similar to the website Views.

gmail vs yahoo new mail differences

So, when it comes to which is better on your mobile device, this one is honestly a matter of preference.

Download: Gmail for Android | iOS (Free)
Download: Yahoo Mail for Android | iOS (Free)

Gmail vs. Yahoo New Mail: What’s Your Pick?

Now it’s your turn to weigh in. Are any of the Yahoo New Mail features enticing enough to turn you into a new user or even a returning one? Better yet, have you decided it’s time to switch to Yahoo New Mail from Gmail or even Outlook?

Maybe Yahoo’s track record of security issues is enough to steer you clear of their mail service for life. Or perhaps you are willing to give it another try to check out their new offerings.

If you decide to stick with Gmail, take a look at these essential Gmail terms and features you should know about 16 Essential Gmail Terms and Features You Should Know About To help you get familiar with Gmail, here are the most important Gmail terms and features you should know about. Read More .

Explore more about: Email Tips, Gmail, Google, Yahoo, Yahoo Mail.

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  1. SWebb
    January 14, 2019 at 3:23 pm

    As an internet veteran of 20+ years, I remember when Yahoo was your only choice. Over then past 20 years running a membership based website, some of the worst email services have been AT&T, Yahoo, Hotmail, SBCGlobal. Their policies of "blocking suspected spam" email has meant many false positives and many of my customers never receive their messages, even though the mail server is set up properly and passes all checks at mxtools. Gmail users never have this false positive issue, so my recommendation for reliable receipt of email is to use GMAIL.

  2. D Wolf
    April 13, 2018 at 4:21 pm

    How does Yahoo's new alliance with Oath figure into this comparison? I was just asked to sign a new privacy agreement with Yahoo/Oath and am leary.

  3. Gazoo
    January 18, 2018 at 11:09 pm

    Too soon... by this, I mean that it will take many years before Yahoo can recover from the hacks (their "security" had no idea was going on) and for (illegally) making all emails available to the US government.

    No amount of fancy new features can remove the stain of Yahoo's incompetence. I still ask myself why hasn't anyone been jailed? The answer is simply that in an age of zero accountability and (back room) federal approval - silicon valley criminals dressed in business suits have taken over our country.

    • KwaK
      January 22, 2018 at 11:51 am

      This - I completely agree. No matter how much more awesome features have been pumped into the "new" Yahoo mail, the massive elephant in the room, which now is a commonly discussed topic (something that was a few years overdue to happen eventually), is the security - Yahoo has been repeatedly been hacked or had mass information leaks (that we know of)... I would not recommend anyone create an email account at Yahoo, except for burner accounts and throw-away email addresses.

  4. DanO
    January 18, 2018 at 9:09 pm

    Yeahhhh. My elderly neighbors asked me over to find out what was wrong with their computer. Turns out it was Yahoo email; they had been forced over to the new look, and in the process they could no longer click on any buttons when using Chrome. IE still worked. However, and worse yet, they lost most of their saved emails in the transition.

    Look at peoples' comments about #YahooMail on Twitter (you have to skip over the posts actually by @YahooMail and those that are covert advertisements)

  5. Fred
    January 18, 2018 at 8:48 pm

    There is absolutely no comparison possible between Gmail & Yahoo Mail.

    The old version of Yahoo Mail is crap, the new version is even worse and slower. Flooded with spam (even in Yahoo Plus) and too often Yahoo Mail is off. The UI is awful. I paid $20/year for years for nothing.

    That review is a waste of the author's time.


  6. Geoff
    January 18, 2018 at 8:13 pm

    Number 1 issue, Spam. Gmail, weeks will go by without a single spam hitting the inbox. Yahoo, lucky to get 15 minutes.