Netvibes – Precise Perfection

I know I’ve posted about Netvibes before, but I thought I’d restate my affection for this personalized startpage. The “big 4” in terms of personalized startpages would be Netvibes, Microsoft’s custom live pages, Google’s custom pages, and Pageflakes. Here is a nice review of the current state (well current as of June 2006) of personalized startpages. Just to clarify, the difference between a RSS reader and a personalized startpage is that a personalized page incorporates many things into a single page including:

  • RSS feeds
  • Weather
  • Search engines
  • To-do-lists
  • Notepads
  • Mail checkers
  • Sports scores
  • Modules that use external APIs to get data
  • The list could keep going on and on because of the APIs that allow for virtually anything

Getting back to the reason I like Netvibes by far the best of the competitors because it has all the little bits of polish that an application has when the developer really exercises loving care. It has little things like automatically updating the different modules asynchronously without having to reload the page (leave the page open and it automatically checks for updates), an email wizard that will more likely than not be able to automatically configure email checking if you just provide your email address and password, podcast playback right inside the page, video playback right inside the page, enclosure detection for RSS feeds (if your feed includes pictures, video, audio it will detect this and let you play it back right inside the page), support for (free web storage), and here is the real deal maker for me:
If you have music stored in your free account at you can play it directly inside Netvibes. This is just an example of a little thing that shows how well thought out this web application really is. I am not getting out of this glowing review, I just want to support this company anyway I can.