Netscape offers Netcenter support for Internet Explorer

Now they're integrating rival companies' products -- sheesh...

Integration is all the rage, apparently. Today Netscape is expected to announce greater integration between Microsoft's Internet Explorer and its own Netcenter Web portal. So you could think of it as kind of the reverse of certain alleged tactics by certain companies -- Netscape is trying to make it easier for users of a rival browser to gain access to its own products. Netscape TuneUp for IE is a free ActiveX control that helps IE behave rather more like Netscape Navigator, as far as Netcenter is concerned. Navigator has features that integrate it into the site, giving users access to various advanced search services, personalisation, software updates, directories and Netscape WebMail. You could see how these integration features might have been seen by Netscape as a way to make Navigator more popular, because it could do things the rival couldn't do -- but that of course depends on these things being ones that users wanted to do. Netscape has been beefing-up Netcenter for a while now, but it's still not somewhere everybody wants or needs to go to. Which is an essential feature of the 'integration' approach to popularising software. Allegedly... By offering the features for IE as well, Netscape is clearly abandoning that approach, levelling the playing field and letting the two products, browser and portal, stand or fall more on their own merits. But that doesn't mean the company is going to stop trying to get more users for both. ® Click for more stories

Sponsored: 10 ways wire data helps conquer IT complexity