Netvibes Launches Universes; Custom/Branded Startpages

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Netvibes UniversesThe Netvibes Universes launch party took place yesterday, coinciding with the Web 2.0 Expo. Netvibes has been known to be a very open company, allowing developers and content markers of all kinds to add to their system — certainly their Netvibes Ecosystem is some indication of this — and Universes now takes this to the next step.

How It Works
Essentially what the folks at Netvibes have done with Universes is taken the last step to open their service and bring up a ton of possibilities with it. Through their ecosystem, so far they’ve enabled people to develop modules, add feeds, podcasts, tabs (a custom selection of feeds; i.e. “gaming” category containing GameSpot feed and IGN feed), but Universes really finishes off this saga of openness in which users can create complete Netvibes pages, either for others to look at or to use as one of their own, with a complete and custom selection of modules, feeds, design (CSS), logos, etc. etc.

Obviously, this kind of a thing will come most useful in one category: branding and marketing. So, they’ve partnered with a ton of artists and companies including Ben Harper, Moby, Deftones, Mandy Moore, 50 cent, Snoop Dogg, CBS, CNN Money, Newsweek, and of course, you can create one for your own.

I think this does two things. One, it opens up a ton of possibilities for Netvibes and where they can take the product, and two, it gives them a business model. Netvibes has been a very innovative company so far with a great product, happy investors, a large and supportive userbase, and now they’ve got something they could make money off of — of course, that is if this thing takes off, which it will through time.

Netvibes Universes