Yammering it up in ... Google Chrome

Yammering it up in ... Google Chrome

Summary: Microsoft has rolled out a Yammer browser extension for Google Chrome, ahead of Internet Explorer. Here's why.


Microsoft's current Office business unit -- which is being morphed into the new Applications and Services team -- is one of the pioneers at Microsoft in true cross-platform delivery.


(And in this case, cross-platform doesn't mean across different flavors of Windows; it means across different operating systems and clouds, both Microsoft's and those of its competitors.)

The latest proof point comes from the Yammer team at Microsoft. Last week, the Yammerers (Yammerites? Yammologists?) rolled out a new Yammer browser extension, allowing users to participate in social-networking conversations more easily from inside their browsers.

In this case, "browser" didn't equate to Internet Explorer. The team rolled out the extension for Google Chrome on July 24. Here it is in the Chrome Web Store.

The new extension adds a Yammer tab to Chrome's menu and allows Yammer users to share Web pages they are viewing by clicking on the Yammer icon, choosing which group they'd like to post into, and then sharing their own comments with a link to the page. The browser extension also will notify users if there is an existing Yammer conversation about a particular Web page.

Currently the Yammer team doesn't have a date as to when it plans to deliver a similar extension for IE, a company spokesperson said, when I asked.

Yammer built the same functionality it is providing with the Google Chrome Extension into Windows 8 via integration with the Share Charm, which allows users to share Web pages into Yammer from IE, the spokesperson said.

So why choose to go with Chrome ahead of IE? From the aforementioned Yammer spokesperson:

"Our development methodology at Yammer is based on lean principles, releasing a Minimum Viable Product (MVP) and making further enhancements based on user behavior. In exploring features to make it easier to share with Yammer from your browser, we decided to release on one platform first and observe usage and engagement to inform future support."

Minimum Viable Product, popularized by the Lean Startup, means the Yammer dev teams are focusing on building "lite" versions of products or features, which are released to a subset of users for data-gathering purposes. The idea is this approach helps vendors more efficiently build, test and continually hone their products.

Topics: Social Enterprise, Browser, Collaboration, Google, Microsoft


Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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  • Yet again MS shows how different they now are

    More cross platform than Google. It is strange how the tables have turned.
    • Huh?

      "More cross platform than Google."? What? The Yammer team releases ONE add-on for Google Chrome and now Microsoft is more cross platform than Google? Google who releases their Chrome browser for Windows and OS/X (thus making the Yammer add-on work for OS/X)? Google whose services work on Windows, OS/X, Linux, iOS and Android?

      Microsoft is catching up to Google in cross platform ability, but it's still far behind.
      • Six of one, half a dozen of the other...

        And yet at the same time Google refuses to launch and official apps on Windows Phone 8.

        It's not a large install base, that's a given, but outside of the US usage is generally rising. Of course, if you only sell 1 of someting, selling 2 will double your sales but still only be 2, but I'm not convinced the Windows Phone market share is the issue here.

        Similar for Windows 8/RT.

        So what could the reason be I wonder....
  • I agree

    They are making the first steps - and as for Google as Microsoft it's all about money.
  • can we discuss cable/alternatives?

    All I have now is an LG cell w/wifi & internet & an HDMI TV. I want some TV some games. where to go from here? Listening to all ideas. have ltd knowledge in techworld.