Google Inc. introduced a service this week that allows users to personalize the company's uncluttered home page with news headlines, local movie times and other features.
The service marks Google's first attempt to bring together many of its disparate services in one popular place: the white space below its Web-search box at www.google.com.
And it's similar to all-in-one Internet sites, or portals, such as Yahoo Inc.'s My Yahoo, Microsoft Corp.'s My MSN and America Online's My AOL.
Just don't call Google's offering a portal.
"It's not a portal," said Eric Schmidt, Google's chief executive. "It's a personalization tool."
The service is available at labs.google.com. Users must sign up for a free Google Account, and they can switch between the personalized page and the standard Google.com.
"This is an alternative," said Marissa Mayer, a Google product manager. "We're not doing away with the classic homepage."