Yandex Blog

New Yandex Service Uses Machine Learning for Hyperlocal Weather Forecast

Machine learning is Yandex's core technology. We’ve long been using it in almost all of our services — to answer users’ search queries, for machine translation, ad targeting, personal recommendations, and plotting routes on maps, among others. Since last year, our MatrixNet machine learning algorithm has been utilised for the optimisation of business processes in real enterprises — weopened Yandex Data Factory for this purpose.

Today we announce yet another application of machine learning in a new field for us — weather forecasting. For this we have developed our own forecasting technology Meteum, which will now be used in the web service and mobile application Yandex.Weather available for iOS and Android.

Basic weather forecasts are traditionally constructed using the Navier-Stokes equations. Models for describing weather are extremely complex, as they depend on a multitude of factors. Programs for their calculation consist of hundreds of thousands of lines of code and run on huge supercomputers. Nonetheless, they still make mistakes, so their forecasts need to be fine-tuned. Besides that, the complexity and resource-intensiveness of traditional calculations results in a situation where forecasts are made for relatively large regions and cities. Constructing a precise forecast for, say, a small village would require taking into account a large number of local factors – such as, solar radiation, phase transitions of water vapour, or thermal radiation from the soil. Performing this task using traditional methods is not much less resource-intensive than for a large city, while the number of people using such a forecast is much lower.

Using machine learning allows collating a large volume of historical data about forecasts and actual weather, identifying causality in forecasting errors and correcting them. This is quicker and easier, as it doesn’t require factoring in laws of nature for each new forecast, but simply corrects traditional mathematical models and localises the forecast down to specific latitude and longitude. That’s exactly what Meteum does.


Our new technology uses traditional meteo models to process the initial data, and works with intermediate results using Yandex’s machine learning technology MatrixNet. To calculate the weather, Meteum constantly compares forecast with actual weather conditions — more than 140,000 times a day. To learn about current weather conditions, we use meteorological station data, as well as weather information from other sources indirectly indicating the situation — about 9 terabytes of data every day. One of the sources is our users, who can let us know about discrepancies between forecasts and real weather conditions via the app. The more data we receive from them, the more precise Meteum’s forecasts will become.


Meteum calculates a new forecast each time a user consults Yandex.Weather on their desktop or mobile device. It locates a person and shows them a fresh forecast for precisely that location. The user can choose another place and time for the forecast to see what the weather will be like around their office in an hour or if it might rain when they go out of town in the evening.

Meteum currently works in 36 regions of Russia, with a possibility to expand to other regions or countries.

Yandex Chat Bots for Telegram Messenger

Our job is to make life easier for everyone, which sometimes means just showing them the opportunities they have never thought of before. We are always on the lookout for new possibilities for our users on any platforms or devices.

When Telegram instant messaging service launched its open Bot Platform last June, the new possibilities came up in the form of fun and efficient chat bots easily implementable on the service. When chatting to someone online it's much easier to just ask a chat bot a straightforward question and receive an instant answer without leaving the chat, than going over to the browser window and looking for information. Chat bots are good at providing simple, factual information, such as a weather forecast for the coming weekend, current traffic conditions, or definition for a new word.

To help chatters enjoy their chatting even more, some of our developers have made chat bots based on Yandex services using Telegram Bot API. Most of these chat bots provide information relevant for our users in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus, Turkey and Kazakhstan, but the ImageSearch chat bot and the Yandex Translator bot could be of use to anyone outside of our current key markets.

ImageSearch instantly offers the user a graphic image or photograph from the Yandex.Images service in response to a keyword request on Telegram. Just type what you want to see and ImageSearch retrieves a picture, which can be shared with other chatters in a couple of clicks.To see something else in response to the same request, just type “/more”. Add the ImageSearch bot to your chat and communicate with your friends using pictures, gifs or memes mined from the internet by the chat bot.


Yandex Translator helps you translate words or phrases and talk to anyone in any of the languages currently available for translation based on Yandex’s technology. With Yandex Translator each member of an international chat can type in their own language and the chat bot will automatically translate their words into the language of their interlocutor.


Telegram's stores currently offers over thousands of chat bot programs for every taste or any problem. To help other chat bot developers, whose goal to make life easier and more fun for everyone we share, we have created a free analytics tool, Botan. Based on Yandex’s free app tracking and analytics tool, AppMetrica, Botan allows chat bot developers know their audience better, including gathering information about specific audience segments or learning about which bot commands are the most popular with certain groups of people.

The New Mobile Analytics and Tracking: Real Time, All in One, Free for All

Yandex is rolling out a revamped version of its mobile app analytics platform – now under the name “AppMetrica”. The new platform features a powerful mobile ad tracking solution in addition to the pre-existing features – user analytics and crash reports. Now AppMetrica covers all key domains for marketers, publishers and developers – and they can access it completely for free and without any limits, in real-time mode and with a single SDK.

We released our analytics tool for the first time almost two years ago as Yandex.Metrica for Apps. It was our response to the lack of good user analytics solutions on market – we had to create our own to learn how mobile apps published by Yandex were performing. Then we thought it may be of interest to other people around the world, and opened it up for everyone – for free.

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Since 2013 we’ve been getting requests from marketers and developers who love the way we do it – currently AppMetrica processes nearly one billion in-app events every day for apps connected to the service. However, users need more, and we got clear signals from our in-house mobile marketers who track Yandex’s app user acquisitions. The main problem is that they had to spend up to 15% of their budgets on mobile ad measurement tools alone, which is quite a lot even for us ☺. Another issue is that product analysts and managers couldn’t easily use detailed traffic source segmentation in analytics tools as the two are separated and usually developed by different providers. In the end, different tools require the integration of multiple SDKs, so project teams need to spend more time on development and testing. We spent almost two years solving these issues to turn AppMetrica into a fully-fledged, integrated, professional mobile analytics and tracking platform.


The new AppMetrica provides detailed ad campaign reporting. Users can drill down to analyse how well different creatives and ad placements are performing, see tracking link parameters breakdowns, and get user engagement reports by applying cohort analysis with retention and event conversion rates which gives a really insightful analysis of traffic quality. AppMetrica is integrated with the most popular mobile ad networks out of the box, including AdColony, InMobi, Millennial Media, Vungle, and many others. We keep expanding the list of ad networks, and users can also manually integrate traffic sources they need and set up postbacks in a few easy steps.

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The new platform aids re-engagement improvements using state-of-the-art deep linking technology. Hardcore marketers have the opportunity to pull raw data from AppMetrica via its API so they can create in-house custom reports or use it in their proprietary software. They soon will get even more options to improve conversion: we are now working on integration with data export from AppMetrica to popular re-targeting and look-alike platforms.

AppMetrica works with Android, iOS and Windows Phone apps. Game developers will also enjoy our Unity plugin. AppMetrica is available for free and starts to provide reports in just a few minutes after rolling up an app with the integrated SDK. 

Yandex Rolls Out Multifunctional App for Android Users in Russia

With more than 85% of the smartphone market in Russia, Android continues to be the country’s favourite operating system. The great variety of devices within a $200 price range supporting this platform, among other things, has contributed to Android’s popularity with Russians who are happy to compromise some of their smartphone’s technical quality, such as memory space, for its affordability. ‘There’s an app for that’ doesn’t really do it for a lot of budget smartphone users.

To make life easier for the owners of budget Android-based devices we have offered them an all-in-one application for their everyday needs – from current weather, currency exchange rates or traffic conditions to what’s on in the cinema around the corner or the shortest way to the nearest bank or restaurant. We have reissued our search app for Android to provide our users with a one-tap access to our key services on their mobile devices.

The new Yandex app has expanded its functions beyond search to include quick access to email, news, maps, city navigation, taxi booking, or any other service available in Yandex’s product range. To use any of these services one doesn’t even need to have a corresponding app on their phone – the refurbished search app will take them to the mobile version of the service at The new Yandex app allows the owners of low-budget Android-based smartphones to enjoy the full mobile experience without having to compromise anything.

First announced in 2011, the Yandex search app now has a weekly user audience of over three million. The new app can be downloaded from Google Play. The users of Yandex.Search in Russia, Ukraine, Belarus and Kazakhstan will be upgraded to the new Yandex app when they update their current version.

Yandex's Translation App for iPhone and iPad Now Provides Translations When Offline

Translation apps on mobile devices sure come in handy when you’re travelling to different countries where you don’t know the local language. But usually they use the internet to perform their translations, which means you need to go online to get help communicating with people or deciphering restaurant menus.

We have recently released an offline version of our Yandex.Translate mobile app for iPhone and iPad. So now this application can work without connecting to the internet, saving you the cost of internet roaming or the trouble of finding a wi-fi hotspot.


Yandex.Translate can be installed from App Store for free. After that, just go to the settings and choose the language pair or pairs that you need to translate to and from, and download the translation database onto your device. Five language pairs with English are available for offline translation: English-German, English-French, English-Italian, English-Spanish and English-Russian. If an English-speaking user is travelling from the UK to Spain, they’ll only need the English-Spanish offline translation database to get by day-to-day, while the other language pairs will only be available online (the app warns about this). After returning home to the UK, the user can delete the English-Spanish offline translation data to free up space.

While we’re on the subject of space and size, we really went to great lengths to get the balance right. As you might know, statistical machine translation is based on searching and indexing parallel texts on the internet. We look for already translated texts and phrases, compare them with the original and rank them according to how often they occur. You can read more about that here. These parallel texts, phrases and word combinations are quite cumbersome, taking up gigabytes on our servers.

For the translation app to work offline, we had to streamline the parallel translation database, so that only the most common translations remained. For example, if the full translation database gives 100 different ways to translate “where can I get the best tapas in Barcelona” into Spanish, the mobile version will retain only the 10 most commonly used translations.

We understand that this kind of streamlining can lower the quality of offline translations, and solving this problem was our biggest challenge. We ran a multitude of different tests and experiments to determine the optimal database size that would retain an acceptable translation quality for offline mobile gadgets. For every kind of translation, the optimal size turned out to be 500 MB. Larger (that is, with the addition of more translation variations) brings insignificant improvements to quality, even if the size is multiplied. And reducing the size and the number of translation options causes serious loss of quality without freeing up much space.

Yandex’s offline translation app can help users in daily life situations in foreign countries, whether they’re on vacation or a business trip: telling a taxi driver where to take them, comprehending what’s on a menu, understanding what street signs and warning signs say. These are the situations in which mobile translation apps are most often used. Our statistics also show that Yandex.Translate is used in private correspondence, school homework and university assignments, for reading tourism guides or news on the internet, for translating recipes, poems and songs. The average length of translations on mobile devices is five to seven words. At present, Yandex.Translate handles about 400,000 translations on mobile platforms every day. Most of our users are in Russia, but we are working on making the app popular outside our home country.

Since we first announced it in December 2012, the capabilities of mobile Yandex.Translate have grown enormously: it now “knows” 44 languages, offering a text-to-speech function for some – meaning it not only translates a phrase from your native language into a foreign one, but also lets you hear how it sounds when spoken.

Nokia’s Android Phones Come to Russia Fitted with Yandex Apps

Nokia’s Android smartphone, Nokia X, announced at the recent Mobile World Congress, comes to the Russian and Belarusian markets equipped with the essential search functionality provided by Yandex. The Finnish company’s first in the X-series of phones premieres today on these markets with the Yandex.Search app already preinstalled and the Yandex search engine as a built-in search provider in the phone’s browser.

Buyers of Nokia’s new product in these countries will be able to funnel mobile apps for all their needs through our alternative Android app store, Yandex.Store, which is now featured in Nokia Store. Nokia’s range of Yandex-enhanced Nokia X smartphones will continue with Nokia X+ and XL with Yandex as a default search provider and Yandex.Store preinstalled.

Nokia’s smartphones have always been popular in Russia and the CIS, not in the least, because of the company’s ability to cater for the specific needs of their customers in each of the markets. It’s only natural for Yandex, who always placed a top priority on relevance of service to a specific user in a specific location, and Nokia to join efforts to make sure the user experience of their customers is locally-relevant, smooth and seamless, even when they go from desktop to mobile, or from one mobile device or OS to another. Nokia’s decision to choose Yandex’s products for their new phones in Russia and Belarus ensures comfortable user experience for their customers in each of these countries, who already know Yandex and its products very well.

We’ve been partnering with Nokia since 2011, when Yandex became a default search provider on Nokia’s Lumia 800 and Lumia 710 distributed in Russia. We’re now happy to have rekindled our old relationship through our support of the alternative Android ecosystem. The love of freedom of choice is what brings Yandex and Nokia together in this partnership.

Yandex Acquires Israeli Developer of Smart Geo-Location Technology – KitLocate

Always on the lookout for top talent and breakthrough technology, Yandex has long been eyeing Israel’s Silicon Valley – Silicon Wadi. And now we are happy to report that the award-winning startup,KitLocate, the developer of a smart, energy-efficient cloud location technology for mobile devices, together with its brilliant team of eight, is joining our mobile search team.

KitLocate’s co-founders Omri Moran, CEO (fourth from the right), Yoav Cafri, CTO (first from the right) and Ron Miller, VP R&D (far left) with their team.

KitLocate’s technology, packed into a developer-friendly SDK, provides location capabilities, including geo-fencing, motion detection and social location, for location-based apps on the user’s iOS or Android smartphone. The trick is, while doing that it lowers battery power consumption down to less than 1% per hour. KitLocate's algorithms allow location-based apps to request the device's geographic coordinates less frequently without losing precision, which considerably extends the phone's life between charges.

The Israeli team’s technology has already been successfully implemented in a mobile app, which helps drivers to find available parking spaces in their immediate vicinity. Popular in Israel financial service, Isracard, uses KitLocate’s technology to deliver its offers to users’ phones based on their current location.

Those of Yandex’s mobile products that don’t need continuous GPS synching, such as our location-based search, cannot wait to be augmented by KitLocate’s smart solution. With KitLocate’s technology, we’ll be able to deliver search results, as well as product or service offers, on the user’s mobile phone or tablet, relevant not only to a specific user, but also to their current location. This cloud solution looks especially promising for location-based recommendation apps.

Yandex’s previous experience working with a startup from Israel was investment in a facial recognition technology developer,, which was later acquired by Facebook. After joining Yandex, KitLocate’s brilliant team, also based in Tel Aviv, is very likely to soon be growing both in size and scale of expertise. Their solution will continue to be available for implementation in other location-based apps that don’t require continuous geo-tracking.

Android Device Manufacturers Get Kitted Out with Yandex.Kit

For the majority of small or medium-sized Android device manufacturers, using the popular Linux-based mobile operating system, which is famously free to install, modify and distribute, is like being given a car without the key. It's nice and all but how do you drive it?

There isn’t much use of a free operating system if you cannot offer your customers all the basic features mobile users now take for granted. The Android mobile OS is free, but all the defining features of a mobile experience – app store, browser, email and maps – are all available under special, case-by-case agreements. 

Freedom of choice. We love it. We have been developing products and services to enjoy this freedom and share it with all internet users since 1997. With the explosive evolution in mobile industry, our key desktop products followed their consumers and migrated to smartphones and tablets

Yandex.Maps, Yandex.Mail and our search service were the first to appear on the world's most popular Android platform, followed by the stellar user interface solution UI Shell 3D, which is now known as Yandex.Shell. Last year, our application store for Android, Yandex.Store, Yandex.Browser and a cloud storage app, Yandex.Disk, joined the range of our Android solutions. 

While we primarily were working on covering all the bases for our users on Android devices, what we've got in the end was a full-fledged Android 'ecosystem'. A comprehensive, out-of-the-box solution, versatile and technologically honed enough to be offered to original device manufacturers as firmware that they can install on their devices shipped to the Russian market. This is the key to the car they were given for free and now they can drive it.

Yandex.Kit is a customisable suite of mobile components available for most versions of Android OS. It has all the basics indispensable for the up-to-date mobile experience. Vendors selling their original Android devices in Russia can enjoy the full Yandex.Kit package, which currently includes an app store, launcher and dialer, browser, maps, a cloud app - 15 apps overall. OEMs targeting other markets can enjoy Yandex.Kit as a trio of Yandex products – Yandex.Shell UI, Yandex.Browser and Yandex.Store.

And the best part is there are no fees. Yandex.Kit is distributed on a fee-free basis and performs well on virtually any hardware, including the not-so-powerful devices popular in Russia and the CIS. In addition, smartphones carrying Yandex.Kit can be easily branded under the manufacturer's name. In Russia, the manufacturer can choose to market their device with the Yandex logo, to piggyback on the existing customer affinity for one of the most recognisable and strong brands in this country.

Huawei and Explay, the early adopters of alternative Android software, will show their devices with Yandex.Kit on board at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona in just four days. Their phones will be available to customers in Russia in March.

Reasons to love Yandex.Kit: 

One-stop authorisation gives the user an opportunity to have access to all Yandex apps after entering their name and password only once – when they are setting up their phone.

Instant contact syncing instantly imports the user’s contacts from their Google Account to their Yandex account.

Smart dialer uses information from Yandex's Business Directory to identify the caller's number even if they aren’t one of the user's contacts.

Yandex.Kit equips the Android device with a Yandex.Shell-based home screen, which transforms the device’s user interface into an interactive 3D space with useful panels and widgets.

Advanced contact book finds the user’s contacts even when the search doesn’t exactly match the contact’s name, and offers phone numbers of venues, companies or businesses, such as restaurants, pharmacies or cinemas, in the vicinity of the user’s current location.

Android app store, Yandex.Store, gives the user access to the inventory of over 100,000 apps, including most popular, such as Twitter, Facebook, Skype, Cut The Rope and others. Users of Yandex.Store in the Yandex.Kit package also receive a 10% rebate from every app purchase to their 'rebate account', which can be used for purchasing more apps. The classical 70/30 revenue share scheme, when the revenue from app sales is shared between the app developer and the store, also includes the manufacturer or provider of the device that carries Yandex.Kit.

Smart, secure and easy-to-use mobile browser, Yandex.Browser, offers smart search suggestions and saves the user’s favourite websites and tabs and arranges them into a single control panel.

Other reasons to love Yandex.Kit:

Yandex's cloud service, Yandex.Disk, is available for running on original devices as part of the package with Yandex.Store, Yandex.Browser and Yandex.Shell. The map library, featuring a worldwide map and detailed maps for the largest US and European cities, compatible with any geolocation app via a mapping API, is available with Yandex.Store or as part of the full package.

Android device manufacturers can also enjoy original branding opportunities for Yandex.Store and freedom to choose a search engine for Yandex.Browser on their mobile device equipped with Yandex.Kit.

OEMs and mobile providers can discover more business opportunities at our stand E33, Hall 5 at Mobile World Congress in Fira Barcelona Gran Via, on February, 24-27.

¡Nos vemos pronto!

Yandex.Metrica Knows Who Used Your App on Android via 3G in London One Hour Ago

– and will tell you all about it just in a couple of clicks

Other than being one of the most popular search engines on the planet, we also make mobile apps. Just like everyone else. As of today, there are 25 apps published by Yandex, from maps and photos to cloud storage and navigation, enjoyed by millions users on their iPhones, iPads, Windows Phones, Android phones and other devices all over the world. Our users have always been our first priority; naturally, to meet all their expectations and maybe do more, we want to know who they are – where they come from, what device and operating system they use, which language they prefer for their interface, what type of connection they have and which provider they use, what they do in the app and how long it takes.

Like any other mobile developer, we tried and tested all sorts of mobile analytics solutions, free and paid. Some of them allowed us to view how many users we had per day or how many of our users were from London. Others went a step further and told us how many users from London we had per day. At a push, we could also see how many users from London per day we had on Android devices.

Only a few of the mobile analytics solutions that we tried could provide us with information in real time. All of them required quite a lot of time and effort to create data reports, which would combine a large number of parameters. We wanted to know more, we wanted it fast and we wanted it to be easy. So, we made an app usage analytics tool of our own - Yandex.Metrica for Apps.

Our good, old and trusted web analytics tool Yandex.Metrica has been measuring site traffic, visitor behavior and ad efficiency for Yandex since 2008. From 2009, the year when Yandex.Metrica became publicly available, millions of websites, online services and advertising clients have been using this tool free of charge. So, we tweaked the analytics tool we loved to use for websites to use it for our apps. And now, our Yandex.Metrica for Apps becomes available to all mobile developers anywhere in the world to use for free.

Yandex.Metrica for Apps is a combination of all the lovely qualities that any mobile app developer will love:

Yandex.Metrica for Apps has a no-nonsense, easy-to-use user interface. It takes only a few clicks to create personalised, high-precision, comprehensive profiles of your app’s audience.

Easy-to-read, custom-made reports 
Using Yandex.Metrica for Apps, you can create app usage reports according to your specifications, which can include any combination of the following parameters: users’ country, app’s version, operating system and its version, device type (tablet or smartphone), model and manufacturer, screen resolution, user interface language, mobile provider, connection type, user actions and time of user sessions.

Real-time information 
Yandex.Metrica for Apps shows you the app’s usage data that is only a few minutes or even seconds old. You can also see what happened in your app hours, days, weeks or months ago.

Crash reports
Yandex.Metrica for Apps offers you detailed, customised reports on your app’s crashes. If there are any.

Popular mobile platforms
Yandex.Metrica for Apps is designed to work on any of the popular platforms. It will seamlessly build into your Android, iOS or Windows Phone app.

Any mobile developer can now see almost in real time a day-by-day breakdown for one week of the number of new users, say, in London and San Francisco who made an in-app purchase using the 1.01 version of the app on Samsung Galaxy S4:

Or, the number of new users of the app’s 1.10 version in the U.S. who spent 30 to 60 seconds interacting with the app, by device:

Or, all the crashes your app had in one week, by device type:

Or, the number of crashes the new users of the app’s version 1.02 on tablets in Germany had in one week:

To start generating personalised reports on your app’s usage, register at, receive the API key and integrate SDK Yandex.Metrica for Apps into your app. Your reports will be available for viewing in your account at within just one minute after integration.

The next version of Yandex.Metrica for Apps, on which we are working hard right now, will include marketing tools, which will complement the existing statistical tools. The new options will give developers an opportunity to see their traffic sources and funnels and use advanced event settings. We cannot wait.
Let us know what you think of our new mobile analytics solution Yandex.Metrica for Apps.

And those of you in London on October 22 or 23 can come and see Yandex.Metrica for Apps in action at our stand 437 at the developer conference and exhibition Apps World in Earls Court. Alex Kochubey, our very own Yandex.Store developer, who spends more time segmenting his user audience than enjoying any other of life’s pleasures, will show and tell all about it.

Simultaneous Translation with Predictive Typing on Android Smartphones

Following the success of our automated translation app, Yandex.Translate, for iOS (over 230,000 downloads since launch in March; about 100,000 translations per day), we are now bridging the communication gap for Android smartphone users by releasing the first edition of Yandex.Translate for Android.

With the English language user interface, the app is of good help to anyone in need of a quick and accurate (well, as accurate as it gets with a machine) translation between English and eleven other languages – Russian, Ukrainian, Belarusian, Czech, French, Italian, Spanish, German, Turkish, Portuguese, Swedish, Danish and Dutch. What makes it much better than your standard robot language is our database of billions of word combinations. We scour the content of huge amount of webpages for patterns and collocations and use statistical algorithms to calculate the best possible equivalent for any given word combination.

Yandex.Translate for Android shares some of its most popular features with its iOS counterpart – predictive typing and simultaneous translation. Just like in Yandex.Translate for iOS, the Android app can translate the source text as it is being typed, while predictive typing can accurately predict the next word in the source text, which cuts input time by more than half. Try typing on an Android smartphone a 40-character phrase, “My flight was delayed due to bad weather", in 14 taps. Yandex.Translate can do that!

Instead of continually changing translations trying to guess what the user wants to say by each new letter they type, Yandex.Translate makes sure the new letter is the end of the word and only then translates this word. In result, the translated text makes sense. In most cases.

The Android app can voice fragments of translated text of up to 100 characters in English, Russian, Turkish, Italian, French, Spanish, German, Czech and Polish. Enough for the user to learn how to ask for a bill, say thank you or offer help in a foreign language. 

Both, the iOS app and the Android app detect the input language automatically and, of course, just like the iOS app, the Android version has an extensive dictionary with full entries, which include word definitions, usage examples, transcription and an opportunity to sound the key word.

Our mobile apps for automated translation use proprietary machine translation technology based on statistical regularities rather sets of rules and complement our eponymous web-based translation service, which runs since March 2011. 

Yandex.Translate for Android is available for free on Google Play and in Yandex.Store.