Monday, January 22, 2007

Worst Name -- Best Start Page:Schmedley!

Just when I was really diggin Netvibes out comes a personalized start page that blows them out of the water! Schmedley is the start page sensation newbie! How is Schmedley turning into the slickest start page around? For starters it provides users with an awesome fun, clean and Mac like interface which brings together content from around the web in a whole new way. Well let me try to give you a run down.
  • Schmidgets (Schmedleys version of widgets) are customizable and excellent in providing users with a one stop channel for a multitude of different venues within that channel.
  • Mac like interface which keeps their channels looking clean and fresh
  • IM/Chat are available with the meebo integration
  • SMS related services - pretty cool but you must know your friends/family cell carriers to send a text!
  • Innovative way to carry out different web searches - simultaneously provides users with results from Google, Yahoo and Windows Live all on one page! (To dig deeper into one channel simply select it and navigate towards the + button)
  • Weather forecasts- complete with 7 day forecasts, radar maps, satellite maps and a combination of both
  • Simplified Amazon search - all from your start page!
  • Keeps all your read your favorite RSS feeds organized and at your finger tips!
  • Movie search: type in your zip code and it provides: locations, movies, show times, trailer and short bio of each feature - pretty nifty!
  • Image search - results are presented in an orderly thumbnail display along with resolution size.

Schmedley is still in the alpha stage so I'm pretty confident they will be tweaking, adding/improving upon many features shortly! They are in the works of developing a suite of web applications aimed specifically for the iPhone and its users; why the iPhone? Perhaps because its known to be the "coolest piece of tech hardware this year" so of course Schmedley wants to jump in on the tech fun!

As for which start page is my favorite? Well there are a few of options that Netvibes has such as the Email integrations, blog search functionality and a cool video search module which Schmedley does not offer. But then Schmedley isn't fully launched! Netvibes seems to offer more but in my opinion but Schmedley offers what they have "better"! So my favorite is still up in the air.

A few things I hope to see Schemdley improve upon:

  1. The ability to have meebo as its own small module allowing users to navigate back and forth in the same window (or as a pop out window) without being logged off of chat.
  2. SMS services to develop a method where you are able to receive a reply to the text message sent.
  3. The ability to subscribe to RSS feeds using the web URL instead of having to type in the exact feed URL.

One dislike I do have with Schmedley is their name; its not the easiest to remember and pass along but once you dive into it, its worth the effort to remember it!

For the lastest news on Schmedley check out their blog!


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