iGoogle the home page from Google and Netvibes' biggest competitor announcing big changes

iGoogle, the personalized home page from Google and the biggest competitor for Netvibes is announcing some changes to come:

1) Google will allow Widget (gadgets) Developers to insert Ads in their Widgets:
"... but there will be some restrictions. Ads will be limited to the canvas view only and certain types of ads will not be allowed. Developers are free to use any ad provider to place ads in their gadget. However, we strive to maintain the best user experience, and as such, we plan on surveying users to determine how ads impact user satisfaction. Poor user ratings and reviews may impact a gadget's viral features, ranking, and directory listing.

Ads cannot move across the page or expand beyond their initial bounds - they must hold a persistent location. No pop-up windows are allowed. Audio ads cannot be initiated without user action."

2) IGoogle will become social and create Friends
Users will have full control over who their friends are and will be able to easily modify their list of friends. Expected to roll out this summer.

3) other improvements include: Notifiactions/Messages, Widget invitations and permissions...

Strangely enough, iGoogle has not its own url meaning by that that it is just a part of the Google main Search web site ?

Some "fresh" data from iGoogle:

iGoogle Users:

  • Tens of millions (??!!) worldwide, 50% US and 50% outside
  • One of Google's fastest growing products the past two years
  • 42 languages, 73 domains

Top Gadgets:
  • Weather
  • Date & Time
  • CNN.com
  • Movies

Interesting comment by Steve Rubel, here.


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