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My Yahoo gives an inch to iGoogle, upstarts

The Internet company's personalized home page service My Yahoo loses ground to rival Google.

This blog was updated at 1:00 p.m.

Yahoo is vulnerable in yet another corner of its Web network. Over the last year, the Internet company's personalized home page service My Yahoo lost ground to rivals Google and even upstarts Netvibes and Pageflakes, according to data from ComScore via TechCrunch. That loss came even after Yahoo updated its personalized home pages last March.

In January 2008, MyYahoo attracted about 47 million visitors, down roughly 6 percent from the same period a year ago, according to ComScore. In contrast, Google's iGoogle drew almost 22 million in January, three times its audience from a year ago. Google's growth puts the company second in the category above Microsoft's MyMSN.

Pageflakes, an upstart whose CEO was formerly with My Yahoo, and which is backed by Benchmark Capital, didn't register on the scale last year, nor did its peer Netvibes. But according to TechCrunch, the two companies now command less than 4 percent of the market for personalized home pages. That's still a small portion of the category for Pageflakes and Netvibes, and yet it shows that people are looking for new tools to improve their Web experience.

But for Yahoo, it's a similar story to Web search declines at the hands of Google, and yet another cut into its traffic.

Update: On Monday, Yahoo redesigned its My Yahoo personalized service with additional features. Like Pageflakes and others, My Yahoo now lets subscribers drag and drop modules of information (weather, stock quotes, and news) anywhere on the page. It also lets people change the background color of the site.