Israeli Internet company Hotbar.com
Inc. this week formally launched its site and a free flagship service
that allows users to create their own browser design.
The site offers more than 1,000 skins, which change the look of the
browser. The company expects that, by offering prettier browser interfaces,
the entire online experience will become “more enjoyable and
The plug-in uses Microsoft’s ActiveX open architecture programming
technology and works only on Internet Explorer. A Netscape compatible
version is in the works.
The company claims that it adds features not found on any other Internet
browser, and operates over the interface without compromising the browser’s
“We are excited to be the first company to offer Internet users such a
significant enhancement to their Web browsers,” said Hotbar.com co-founder
and Chief Executive Officer Oren Dobronsky. “The standard browser interface is a very boring
gray color, and takes up 20 percent of the total screen area. We let people
customize their computers, making them more interesting to look at and more
fun to use.”
New designs are added to the site’s Skin Gallery regularly, and can be
organized into a catalogued skin manager. Users can create skins in
standard bitmap format using their own artwork and photographs.
Additional features include a pull-down link menu, a “Top 10” site list
ranked by user popularity, and link to AltaVista’s translation service.