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June 14, 2008

New Google Mobile Homepage

Google decided to remove the gadgets from the mobile homepage and place them in a separate iGoogle page. You still can't see all the gadgets from the desktop version of iGoogle, but your favorite feeds, the weather information and the Gmail summary no longer slow down the homepage.

Google Mobile Blog gives another reason why the mobile homepage will load faster: "when you navigate to in your browser, we cache the homepage on your phone. If you bookmark this homepage, then returning to Google using the bookmark is almost instantaneous."

Since the homepage is now static and doesn't display personalized content, it can be cached indefinitely. Google chose to politely ask your browser to cache it for 1,209,600 seconds = 14 days.

But Google still wants to see how many people visit the mobile homepage and this is impossible if all the content is cached. That's why, the last element from the homepage is a tracking pixel, a 1x1 GIF image:


  1. This is what the 1 x 1 pixel returned. I was surpised it didn't have a 'Content-length' header with the size of the pixel. I counted 43 bytes. Pretty small. It looks like it's black, but I'm not sure. Would that make it smaller?

    HTTP/1.0 200 OK
    Content-Type: image/gif
    Cache-Control: no-cache
    Date: Sat, 14 Jun 2008 23:29:37 GMT
    Server: GFE/1.3
    Connection: Close


  2. Just a general question: is it just me and my Nokia N95 or is there something defunct with Picasa and Google Docs through Google Mobile?
    Anyone with similar experiences? Clues? (Using the standard integrated Nokia browser, that is...)

  3. Forcing us to login to iGoogle to see weather data, is really absurd & ridiculous from a users perspective.

  4. please check

  5. New Google mobile page that forces you to add things you want to it stinks.

    Why take away the option to use the old igoogle page for phones (iphone). It used to look like now it looks like
    Why make it harder for me to look at my igoogle page on my phone?


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