Friday, October 17, 2008

New stuff in iGoogle

If you wish you could deal with all your stuff without having to leave your iGoogle page. With today's release, you can. Google had rolled out an updated design for iGoogle to all U.S. users, which includes full canvas views for gadget and support for full feed reading. Hope they will launch for other countries soon. Below is some details of the new features of iGoogle :

Not all of iGoogle gadgets have canvas views yet, but here are some of the best:

  • News - New gadgets from The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal and The Washington Post give me full-page views of what's new in the world. Nice.

  • Games - The Sudoku gadget lets me play thousands of full-page Sudoku puzzles without squinting at 6-point type. The GoComics gadget gives me my fix of Garfield and Doonesbury and lets me choose from all of their other comics. I've also spent many coffee breaks browsing through videos from YouTube and CurrentTV.

  • Entertainment - I've configured the TV Guide gadget to my zip code and just used it today to figure out when the newest episode of The Office is playing. Flixster's movies gadget lets me access trailers, ratings, and theater information for any movie. I also use the iLike gadget to browse news, concerts, and free MP3s from my favorite musicians.

  • Google stuff - The new Gmail gadget lets me read my full email and perform simple actions like send or reply to emails without leaving iGoogle. Last but not least, a gadget that I authored and use every day is for Google Finance, which provides full-screen finance charts and news of the stocks in my portfolio. Here's a full list of our highlighted canvas view gadgets.

Google also replaced the tabs at the top with a left navigation that allows for access to any gadget with one click. These changes makes iGoogle a more useful homepage and a better platform for developers. And this is just the beginning: Expect to see more canvas gadgets created by developers and more new features on iGoogle soon. Not in the U.S.? Don't worry. Google will be rolling out this updated version in other countries very soon.

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