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Yahoo widgets dock

What is a widget? It's basically a gateway on your TV screen to Internet-supplied content in a certain subject area. All TVs with Yahoo widgets can connect to the Internet, and via that connection can populate the widgets with real-time information and updates.

The main interface of Yahoo widgets appears as a dock along the bottom of the screen composed of individual elements known as "snippets." Think of each snippet as the tip of each widget iceberg. You can scroll horizontally through the snippets to get to the one you want, arrange the order snippets appear, and access system settings via the profile snippet.

Read the Yahoo widgets hands-on review.

Updated:Caption:CNET Reviews staffPhoto:Sarah Tew
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Yahoo widgets dock loading

Unfortunately, widgets take awhile to load. When we engaged widgets for the first time after powering up the TV, it took about 25 seconds to load the dock and 45 total seconds for all of the snippets to update.

Updated:Caption:CNET Reviews staffPhoto:Sarah Tew
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Yahoo widgets tutorial

A friendly tutorial guides people through the system.

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Yahoo widgets snippets

On many snippets within the dock, you can toggle the information up or down, to show brief weather information in different cities, for example, without engaging the full widget.

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Yahoo widgets gallery

The widget gallery is where you'll find new widgets organized by category. Currently only four widgets are available, although many more will be available soon.

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Yahoo widgets gallery categories

Different developers get their own categories within the gallery. The list of developers announced for the system includes CBS Interactive, CinemaNow, Cinequest, Disney-ABC Television Group, eBay, GE, Group M, Joost, MTV, Samsung Electronics, Schematic, Showtime, Toshiba, and Twitter.

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Yahoo widgets loading

Widgets can take between five and 20 seconds to load, depending on the complexity of the information they contain.

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Yahoo widgets weather

The weather widget is very well detailed and includes esoteric items like moon phase and wind chill, with information provided by weather.com.

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Yahoo widgets news

A cheesy newspaper graphic at top of the news widget cycles through five top headlines with images, and individual stories contain thumbnail-sized images, too.

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Yahoo widgets news categories

You can browse news headlines in a variety of categories.

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Yahoo widgets finance

Yahoo's full-featured stock ticker, business news center and portfolio tracker is the most complex widget available so far. You can enter custom tickers or automatically import information from your online Yahoo finance account. If you track a lot of stocks, we recommend getting the online service just to import the information, if nothing else, rather than entering your portfolio manually. There's a wealth of information, but slow response times make it even more tedious to load information than usual. Then again, it's faster than getting up to turn on the computer.

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Yahoo widgets finance loading

Annoying loading screens can also pop-up within a widget as it accesses further information.

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Yahoo widgets finance detail

The finance widget also lets you access detailed information and headlines about each company.

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Yahoo widgets Flickr

The Flickr widget enables full onscreen access to the photo upload site. You to browse your own photos uploaded to Flickr, check out your friends' or groups' images, and explore other people's photos by category.

Updated:Caption:CNET Reviews staffPhoto:Sarah Tew
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Yahoo widgets Flickr browse

It's easy to browse the photos of friends, groups and complete strangers in the Flickr widget. Chances are good that whatever you find here is much more interesting than what's actually on TV itself.

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Yahoo widgets Flickr community

Community support is what sets the Flickr widget apart from the Picasa function of Panasonic's VieraCast system.

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Yahoo widgets Flickr full-screen

Full-screen, high-resolution photos from the Flickr widget look great on an HDTV.

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Yahoo widgets Flickr slideshow

The full-screen mode of the Flickr widget also lets you set up a slideshow.

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