Google, the search company that Microsoft counts as its biggest rival, has created a customized version of Microsoft's Internet Explorer 7 browser.
Dubbing the edition that's "Optimized for Google," the Mountain View, Calif., search giant has added its own toolbar to IE 7, and set the home page and default search to google.com. The custom IE 7 can be downloaded from here.
"Like Yahoo, USAToday.com, and others, [Google] used the Internet Explorer Administration Kit to create [this] version," said Tony Chor, an IE group program manager, in an entry on the team's blog. The kit is primarily aimed at corporate developers who want to tweak IE, and then simplify company-wide configuration and deployment.
Google also has posted a beta of version 3.0 of its toolbar for the open-source Firefox browser. The preview adds several new features, including integration with Google Docs & Spreadsheets, the search company's online word processor and spreadsheet. When the option is enabled, users can open a Docs or Spreadsheet file by dragging it onto Firefox, by clicking on a file link in a Web page, or by double-clicking a file icon on the desktop. Other additions to the toolbar range from a "Send To" feature to go-everywhere bookmarks; most are already available in the Internet Explorer version of the Google Toolbar.
Google Toolbar 3.0 Beta for Firefox can be downloaded from the Google site.