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Google Releases Improved iGoogle For Mobile

IGoogle for Mobile is faster and easier to use on Android devices and Apple's iPhone, Google says.

Thomas Claburn

June 12, 2009

2 Min Read

In a boost for the Web as a universal mobile development platform, Google on Thursday released an improved mobile version of its iGoogle personalized home page for Android devices and Apple's iPhone.

"We're excited to roll out an improved beta version of iGoogle for the iPhone and Android-powered devices," said Google software engineers Dan Zivkovic and Zhen Wang in a blog post. "This new version is faster and easier to use. It supports tabs as well as more of your favorite gadgets, including those built by third-party developers. Note that not all gadgets -- like those with Flash -- will work in mobile browsers."

Adobe Flash may not be missed in the not-so-distant future. Adobe CEO Shantanu Narayen has said that his company is working with Apple to deliver a version of Flash for the iPhone. But HTML 5, the emerging Web standard, supports video delivery, and its continued adoption could limit the appeal of technologies such as Flash that rely on proprietary plug-ins.

At its recent developer conference, Google demonstrated a version of YouTube built with HTML 5. YouTube currently relies on Flash-based video.

IGoogle for Mobile is a Web application, like Gmail for Mobile. Despite all the hype about iPhone application development, Google sees value in developing applications based on open Web standards.

At the Web 2.0 Expo in San Francisco in April, Google VP of engineering Vic Gundotra suggested that, thanks to HTML 5, Web standards are poised to become the preferred mode of mobile development. The reason is that developers would rather not have to maintain code for dozens of mobile platforms.

IGoogle for Mobile should expand the exposure of Google Gadgets, which should in turn make gadget development more appealing and profitable.

Accessing iGoogle for Mobile is simply a matter of visiting igoogle.com using a mobile browser. It's available in 38 languages.

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About the Author(s)

Thomas Claburn

Editor at Large, Enterprise Mobility

Thomas Claburn has been writing about business and technology since 1996, for publications such as New Architect, PC Computing, InformationWeek, Salon, Wired, and Ziff Davis Smart Business. Before that, he worked in film and television, having earned a not particularly useful master's degree in film production. He wrote the original treatment for 3DO's Killing Time, a short story that appeared in On Spec, and the screenplay for an independent film called The Hanged Man, which he would later direct. He's the author of a science fiction novel, Reflecting Fires, and a sadly neglected blog, Lot 49. His iPhone game, Blocfall, is available through the iTunes App Store. His wife is a talented jazz singer; he does not sing, which is for the best.

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