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Google kills iPhone-optimized iGoogle

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Google has silently pulled the plug on its iGoogle website designed specifically for the iPhone, now unceremoniously redirecting traffic to its standard mobile version of the web portal instead.

Until now, those who visited Google from an iPhone or iPod were treated to a version of iGoogle portal made just for the enormously popular Apple device. But without so much as a warning, the special treatment has come to an end.

The only scrap we could scavenge about the decision comes from a Google support forum, where a Google employee tries to calm a swarm of infuriated users.

"We decided to direct iPhone users to the standard mobile iGoogle Page. We've found that people hit iGoogle from lots of different phones -- we want to ensure you'll all see the same version," he writes. "Most or all of your existing content should translate over to the standard mobile version. The only exception would be any gadgets that aren't compatible with most mobile browsers."

Which isn't terrible useful for extracting useful information, so we'll idly speculate: Perhaps it's a simple matter of leveling the playing field with Google's Android making tracks in the mobile arena. Then again, Google still makes plenty of iPhone-specific apps, like Google Earth.

It could also simply be that not enough folks were using iGoogle on the iPhone to justify the expense of running a separate website.

Or maybe a little from column A and B. Who knows? Google works in mysterious ways. ®

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