Facebook unveiled the new layout for its news feed which it said will be rolling out to a select test user group today. The new layout features many design changes. According to Facebook, the new design borrows many features from the mobile Facebook applications, giving Facebook a more consistent user interface between devices. Examples of mobile features coming to the desktop are the grey retractable sidebar, the “new stories” notification and a wider column for the actual feeds.
Facebook’s new news feed features a cleaner interface with a better hierarchy of titles, photos and links. Zuckerberg explained that the content of news feeds have changed from being largely text based to 50% now being photos and the rest comprised largely of third party feeds, videos and other media. For this reason, photo albums, video feeds, check-ins, music shares, etc have been revamped to feature more prominently in the news feed.
Other changes include smart features like hovering over a user’s profile picture next to a photo album to reveal the comments and likes from that user relating to the album. See the slideshow below for screenshots from the press event.
NEW: See the behind the scenes video below:
Today Google also made a few changes to Google+ profile pages. A user’s cover photo is now 2120 by 1192 px. This is a brave move by the social network. Reactions to the change have been mixed. If I may add some spice to this review, I’d like to suggest how similar the new Facebook layout is to the Google+ news feed. Of course, Google+ still features the much-complained-about whitespace, but the similarity in the layout between the two feeds is undeniable from the shortcuts at the left to the photo and feed display and the suggestions to the right of it, not forgetting the ability to switch between streams/circles. What do you think? If you’d like to be among the first to try the new look, head over to https://www.facebook.com/about/newsfeed and join the waiting list!