Back in December we wrote about the new “social-side” of Netvibes. At the time, Netvibes Ginger launched into a private beta and has only been available to those with invitations. The big deal with Ginger is all of the new social elements like widgets and the option to import and export info from social networks like Facebook. Another big deal has been made out of all of the new storage opportunities. They said that the final release was expected in January, and so while they’re a little late, Netvibes Ginger is now available to everybody as of this morning.
Now when you go to the Netvibes page, you’ll be presented with a pop-up that explains that Ginger is open for everyone. You’ll have to sign-up to use it, and then use a code they give you to get started. Migrating your account from the old version to the new does take a few minutes. The biggest change you’ll notice aside from all of the social aspects is the interface. It’s quite a bit different from the previous version of Netvibes and looks great. They also have new themes to choose from and new opportunities to personalize your start-page even more.
The one downside is simply the fact that they haven’t worked out the details for the Web Storage Device. At the top of your Netvibes page you’ll notice next to the “Profile” and “Sign Out” link that it says “Drive.” It’s grayed out so it’s hard to see, but if you hover your mouse over it you’ll see that it says “coming soon.” It has said that ever since it launched into beta. Everybody thought that it would be ready for this launch, however, it wasn’t. There’s been no word from the Netvibes team as to when the drive will be made available and who they’re teaming with so that people can save items that are important to them. Webware made an educated guess that they’ll be teaming with Box.net to offer the service, but the partnership hasn’t been finalize yet.
Once the Netvibes Team manages to get the Web drive access available to their users, they’ll have a complete personalized homepage service that offers a lot of value to their users. Hopefully we’ll be seeing it soon…