Following the worldwide collapse of Excite, Apple has been forced to find a new host for the official Apple start page.

The start page is the page Macintosh users visit when they first open up a newly installed browser on new Macs, not the front page of Apple's Web site. It's a portal of information specific to Apple, with other news and information for the day. The page also offers links to the Apple Store and a variety of Mac-related Web sites and services.

In the UK, Apple has teamed up with Time Warner subsidiary, Netscape-AOL to host the page. Apple says it's trying to "provide customers the best initial experience on the Web".

In a pop-up window visible when users enter the newly-hosted site, the partners say: "Netscape and Apple are working together to bring you the best online content every day - sources like CNN, Sports Illustrated, Entertainment Weekly, and, of course, Apple. We hope you enjoy your new Apple Start Page."

Other features include Apple news and access to movie trailers. However, changing hosts is not without its casualties. Apple customers who had set up personalized settings on the Excite-hosted page will have to set up the settings again, as "customer data was not part of the agreement". Netscape offers a slew of customizable features.

Apple's UK PR manager, David Millar said: "There's one page for the world right now, but a UK page will be developed."