Ask Mr. NoobieQUESTION: What is Google’s replacement for iGoogle? – Pat S. from Alabama

ANSWER: I’ll get to your question in a minute, Pat, but I wanted to first make sure everyone else reading this understands what iGoogle is (or was).

iGoogle is a visual dashboard of information developed by, you guessed it, Google, which people use as their default home page in their browser. Once you set up your iGoogle page, you can customize it to your heart’s content with modules from third-party developers. Examples of modules could be a Gmail overview, your calendar, stock quotes, news headlines, movie showtimes or any other of the thousands of modules available to choose from.

Unfortunately, Google has decided to shut down iGoogle as of today, November 1, 2013. Which leads to your question on what is still available to replace it.

Best replacement

Probably the best replacement choice is NetVibes. It’s like iGoogle on steroids. In fact, it might seem at first like you can do too much with it but keep in mind it only needs to be as complex as you make it. If you just want a simple dashboard like you had in iGoogle, then keep it simple with NetVibes.

I thought about going through all of the features of NetVibes in my answer but then I came across this video which does a pretty decent job of showing off what’s possible with NetVibes. Towards the end of the video, it gets a little overwhelming so I would concentrate more on the features in the first couple minutes of the video.

If you can not see the embedded video above please use the following link: What is NetVibes?

Runners up

If I had to pick runners up, it would be STARTME, which offers a similar feel to iGoogle although it appears to be more focused on providing links to content rather than displaying the content itself. They even have instructions on how you can migrate your account from iGoogle to STARTME. Might be worth checking out.

A second choice would be igHome which bills itself as the iGoogle Alternative. One glance at their home page and you’ll know why. It looks almost identical to iGoogle.

Do you have a question for Mr. Noobie®? Submit your question here.

Patric Welch

Patric Welch founded Noobie, Inc. in 2006 to help others effectively choose and use technologies to enhance their work and lives. The catchy company name earned Welch the name of Mr. Noobie®, but, in reality, Welch is an experienced and professional techie. Unlike most techies, Welch evaluates emerging technologies from a noobie’s perspective and provides technology education for all skill levels in a friendly, non-threatening way.
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