Top Internet Portals
By Guy Yosub
An Internet portal is a website that links users to other websites they are searching for. It's similar to a "search engine" but is meant to be used more for general reference than specific searches. The top websites in the world are actually portals, as they function as hubs that link users to other reference sites. As such, the top Internet portals happen to also be the most popular websites.
Google started as a search engine but has since grown a great deal. Now Google offers a personalized page, known as iGoogle, which users can customize to display as many or as few reference sites as suits them. Google also offers email services, an instant messenger, and home page preferences, which make it a portal site. Google is the most popular website in the world and has the most hits, making it the most popular portal site in the world as well.
Yahoo is continually in the top 10 most popular websites in the world, often just slightly below Google but above most other sites, so Yahoo is the second most popular Internet portal. Sometimes it is ranked third, below Live.com as mentioned in the next section. Yahoo also offers email services, as well as web-hosting, social networking, and a personalized home page. Like iGoogle, users can set their preferences to show as little or as much customized information as they like.
Live.Com closely follows Yahoo (sometimes even placed slightly above it) as the most popular website in the world and is therefore the second or third most popular Internet portal. Live.Com is owned by Microsoft and is the new offspring of MSN.com. Like Google and Yahoo, Live.Com offers email services, personalized pages, and social networking. Recently Microsoft released a new search engine called "Bing," which advertises advanced search capabilities. Bing.com, Live.com and MSN.com are all connected and offer the same portal experience.
Guy Yosub was a pioneer in the field of ecommerce and has been writing about the industry for over 10 years. He has written editorials for eBay and has contributed to eHow. Yosub has a master's degree in English from CUNY Queens College, and a bachelor's degree in comparative literature and cinema.