I am not sure when this changed Google seems have made the login screen to create new user accounts more obvious as to whether you are are creating an account with a gmail or a 3rd party email address. This is much improved interface design that will make it clear that you don’t need a gmail address to get a Google account.
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New Login Screen Makes Google Account Creation More Obvious
by Mike Blumenthal
Interesting…how did you get to this sign up screen? I came across this one the other day and was concerned that they were moving toward requiring a Gmail address be created (because it looked like the only option available. However, depending on which product you’re using (e.g. Places), it will still sometimes lead to the former Create an Account screen.