Gravatar is a convenient service that helps users quickly add their avatar and basic information to almost any account they make online. The application lets the user create their own “globally recognized avatar.” This is an image the user uploads. Users can also add their email address, username, and a one liner to go with their account. Each time the user creates a new account; they can import the data through Gravatar rather than upload the same image and enter the same data over and over again. As long as the website or blog supports Gravatar, the user will only have to add their email to import everything. Gravatar adds another feature that allows others viewing the user’s profile to hover over the avatar image to see a pop up box that includes links and a note added by the user. Profile viewers can also click the image to access the user’s Gravatar profile, which lists all of their third party profiles on one page.Show more screenshots »
Prior to 2007, Gravatar did not offer as many features and was generally not kept up as well as it could have been. During this time, the site’s creator neglected the current Gravatar while working on a brand new version. Gravatar 2.0 was launched on February 16th, 2007 and included more features such as a crop feature for internet hosted images and improved server script. Additional changes allows users to create two Gravatars per account that can be switched back and forth. By June of the same year, over 30,000 new users had joined the Gravatar community.
Gravatar is dedicated entirely to making life easier for internet users. The application gives the user a centralized place to create a profile that they can use when creating other third party profiles. The application includes a number of convenient extras, such as the multiple Gravatars feature and the ability to add links to the profile. Thanks to Gravatar, users can spend less time searching for and uploading images and more time enjoying the sites, blogs and forums they register for.
Gravatar welcomes users with a white and vibrant blue color scheme. The narrow blue header contains the stylish white and light blue Gravatar logo. The user’s profile page is kept simple, with a list of sites that the user belongs to running down the left side and a large avatar image along the right and center. Below the image, the user’s username and recommended links can be browsed as well as their one liner. Additional images are found to the right of the avatar (if the user has uploaded any). Personal links appear with small thumbnails of the website.
A new use can create a Gravatar account by mousing over the white “Sign Up” link in the upper, left hand corner (in the blue header bar) or clicking the white and black “Get Your Gravatar” button found along the left hand side. The following page asks the user for their email address. The user is advised that after submitting their email address, a confirmation message will be sent and must be accessed to complete registration and create a password. After entering a valid email address, the user can click the white “Sign Up” button at the bottom of the form to continue.
For a period of time, Gravatar offered premium paid membership to its users. After Automattic acquired the application in October of 2007, all paid services were made free. Today there is no subscription required to use Gravatar. Users are given access to all features and are not required to pay anything. After the switch to completely free access, Gravatar refunded users who had recently paid for the month and improved server response times.
Gravatar.com is ideal for anyone who frequently signs up for blogs and forums. Users can streamline the registration process by importing redundant information and their image using Gravatar. The application also allows the user to include more personal information through their Gravatar profile and the hover over feature.