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6 Alternatives to iGoogle For Personalized Homepages

igoogle-shutdown

iGoogle has less than a year to go before it’s shut down for good on November 1, 2013. While Google seems to think that iGoogle isn’t necessary anymore, there are other services waiting to take its place.

Google says that “with modern apps that run on platforms like Chrome and Android, the need for iGoogle has eroded over time.” If you disagree, try one of the services below.

Awesome New Tab Page

Awesome New Tab Page isn’t a website – it’s an extension that replaces Google Chrome’s new tab page. Awesome New Tab page allows you to install a variety of widgets, just as iGoogle does. There are widgets for displaying new Gmail messages, the weather, items from an RSS feed, calendar events, a calculator, and more.

ANTP runs in Chrome, so it’s clearly Google’s idea of the kind of app that should replace iGoogle. On Android, home-screen widgets can also function similarly to iGoogle.

awesome-new-tab-page

igHome

Unlike a lot of other services here, igHome is a website that’s clearly inspired by iGoogle and tries to closely imitate it. The design looks similar – there’s even a black bar along the top of the page with links to Google’s services including Gmail, Calendar, Maps, Play, Images, and YouTube.

Like iGoogle, igHome supports widgets, including widgets that display a variety of RSS feeds, the weather, and bookmarks. Other widgets allow you to interact with Google services such as Gmail, Google Calendar, and Google Tasks. igHome is currently in beta, and it could be a popular replacement to iGoogle when iGoogle goes offline for good.

ighome

Netvibes

Netvibes is focused on business users these days – and its home page sells itself as a business tool – but Netvibes still offers free personalized home pages.

Netvibes offers a large selection of widgets for weather, email, to-do lists, web searches, news, and more. Unlike igHome and some of the other services here, Netvibes has a deep catalog of widgets – whatever you’re looking for, you’ll probably find it.

netvibes

uStart

uStart works similarly to the other services here, allowing you to add widgets for Facebook, Twitter, tasks, TV shows, email, calendar events, weather, RSS feeds, and more. It’s a very complete solution – whether you prefer it or Netvibes may just come down to which design you like most.

ustart

My Yahoo!

Yahoo is still around, as is My Yahoo!, Yahoo’s personalized start page. It’s essentially Yahoo’s version of iGoogle. Like iGoogle, My Yahoo! offers a personalized start page with news, weather, and stock information. You can see new emails from your inbox and view tweets in one place – even add custom RSS feeds to view new content from your favorite websites.

Unfortunately for some users, My Yahoo! is integrated with Yahoo!’s services. You won’t find options for viewing your Gmail, Google Calendar, or Google Tasks here, nor will you find quick links to other Google services.

my-yahoo

Protopage

Protopage feels a bit cluttered compared to the other options here. While it also has a variety of widgets, its standout feature is its theming support. You can set custom colors and backgrounds for your Protopage personalized home page. You’ll also probably want to take advantage of this feature – the default color scheme isn’t as easy one the eyes as the other services here.

protopage


While iGoogle is going the way of the dodo, you do have quite a few alternatives. Which you prefer may just come down to which design you like best, so feel free to give each one a spin.

Chris Hoffman is a technology writer and all-around computer geek. He's as at home using the Linux terminal as he is digging into the Windows registry. Connect with him on Google+.

  • Published 11/19/12

Comments (31)

  1. Dark Reality

    about:blank or Google.com for me.

    I’ve tried a bunch of these and I always go back to the simple solution that doesn’t load anything, or doesn’t load anything but a search box.

    uStart looks cool, but like the rest, it’s information overload.

  2. bluelord

    cool.. i like Awesome New Tab Page hope the idea catches on..

  3. wbrown

    With the integration of google apps in igoogle, it’s a shame that they feel it necessary to discontinue it.
    There can’t be a terrible lot of overhead in maintaining it, I wish they would reconsider and keep it.

  4. vis...

    ive used fastdial for firefox for as long as i can remember …
    heres what it looks like a.t.m. : http://dl.dropbox.com/u/7801385/Misc/visdial.png

    pretty tired of the look so ill be hunting around for some new images / logos to make new thumbs soon.
    just too damn lazy! LOL!

  5. jkd

    I use myway.com and configure it to show only the news headlines. Clean, uncluttered, simple.

  6. hellerdude

    Yeah I second wbrown’s opinion in keeping iGoogle running. Nothing is quite as handy, informative and gives an overview of various feeds at a single glance.

  7. DW

    They forget to mention M$’s my.msn.com home page. I have been using it since the cows left home, although I wonder for how much longer? Maybe the cows are coming home after all…

  8. harv

    Always seems a strange thing to want to me, these ‘services’ are simply another way of collecting data about your habits while online. The number of scripts running on some of these sites is very high and you pay for the bandwidth. If I want weather information I keep a weather site open in a tab, same goes for any other widget. I am a bit over keen on privacy though.

  9. Paul

    about:blank for me.
    I don’t understand why anyone wants all that rubbish sitting in front of their eyes.
    busy, busy, busy … Sheesh.

  10. Sterling

    I use the new tab page in Chrome and IE10 (Windows 7 Preview). I used to use iGoogle but then it went through too many changes and I didn’t like it. Themes were cut off at the top.

  11. Doctor Worm

    You forgot to mention my.msn.com.

  12. Mtech

    I customised my own iGoogle pages with old Pics of my hometown, I don’t see that anymore and it saddens me. I think Google should bring it back. Like someone else said, how much overhead or resources does it take to keep it there. Obviously the numbers weren’t there. It’s a pity.

  13. Dave

    I really like iGoogle log into it in the morning and my RSS feeds are there, stuff relevent to my technical job etc.

    I can’t understand why Google want to bin it off

  14. michaelsulisz

    With windows 8 you can probably get most of that information on the start page.

  15. Steve S.

    I use iGoogle to keep about 30 tech sites in check. It takes me about 30 seconds to look through the headlines and see if there is anything worth reading. I’ve tried to use a few rss readers but it takes too much time checking one site at a time. I don’t see how this could be a very big burden to Google when most of the data is coming from other sites? I don’t understand why Google is creating bad press and hard feelings by getting rid of something that seems so minimal for them to keep around. I guess there’s no money in it for them? People that don’t understand iGoogle or why other don’t use it obviously have never tried it, or simply don’t read very much.

  16. tommy2rs

    Or dust off the html skills (or …gasp…even learn some, it’s not rocket science) and make your own start page if it’s that important to you. Make it plain, make it fancy, strict family values or NSFW, your choice. Keep your html file on your hard drive and select it as your homepage. Works like a charm and no one snooping on your choices.

    Everything doesn’t have to be handed to you.

  17. Ray

    I just use the Duck Duck Go search engine as a start page.

  18. john lee

    Hello, hello – calling planet htg – did you notice not everyone wants US customisation when suggesting & using igoogle replacements eg ighome. There are actually other countries in the world!

  19. Bob

    Never, ever forget Daily Rotation
    http://www.dailyrotation.com
    It’s the greatest geek homepage ever….

  20. Chemical

    http://www.google.com

    Fast loading and simple.

  21. abnerjoseph

    No one mentioned myfav.es. its the best I have found and use on two browsers.

  22. Matt Foley

    You should have said iGoogle is essentially Google’s version of My Yahoo.

  23. Leona

    Personally, I am a big fan of a recently launched service called myLinkCloud. I am sure myLinkCloud will be an awesome iGoogle alternative. It allows much more freedom than iGoogle. It´s still in Beta with widgets like RSS feeds, weather etc. yet to come, but it is live-synced and you can share your link clouds with friends or colleagues. See for yourself https://mylinkcloud.com/

  24. cam2644

    I never liked iGoogle and always try to keep clear of signing into Google.Like Ray I use DuckDuckGo as my start page.Netvibes is good for users who want something more elaborate.

  25. Barry Etheridge

    So none of them’s got Garfield as far as I can tell. Alternatives they ain’t!!!!!

  26. Linda Gargiulo

    Awesome New Tab Page is the best of them all! Love that you can set and customize favorite url’s of your own choice into the fields, as well as widgets. It seems to have it all!

  27. dofo

    Alternatives suck IMHO. Google is driving us back to M$ msn.com or clean google.com page.

    Google is beyond stupidity to end iGoogle and don’t come up with a better alternative.

    Thanks for the overview anyway, it’s informative.

  28. Joe F

    igHome is perfect. I have my home page setup identical to my iGoogle page. Thanks.

  29. hawkwind

    tried netvibs, and it is really bloody awful. i will just go back to excite for christ sake

  30. hawkwind

    actually igHome is working right now. i wanted something with local weather and a few reasonable news outlets i love silence interrupted by human conversation. hell’s hearing or being heard by the same people from the time you wake up until you fall asleep

  31. Doebert

    I have tried MyYahoo and its ok, but it was time to move on. So I reviewed netvibes and it looks like way too much for me! I tried protopage’s demo and it seems promising. Then I got this invitation to try homepagey. It’s very new but looked pretty good. I am currently using it and I most likely will keep it. Not Igoogle by any means, but very nice. If any one is interested here is there website http://homepagey.com I don’t know what’s up with the invitation thing, but if you contact them in time you will get one?

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