The creators of Facebook have given it a facelift! I have just logged into the new version for the first time and so have probably not seen the full extent of the changes but thought Id post my initial findings. On logging in for the first time you are displayed a message from Facebook explaining the changes to their interface, nothing mentioned but I have posted the message below. Apparently the three goals of the facelift were:
- make everything clean and easy to use, reduce the clutter.
- give the user more control over their profile (what, you mean make it more like myspace?)
- show the most recent and relevant content
Apparently this is all based upon recommendations made by Facebook users although Im sure I was never asked my opinion! Anyway to the initial observations. The main change appears to be the introduction of tabs on the pages, both profile and home page. On the homepage they have separated out top stories, status updates, photos and posted items. Obviously aimed at objectives 1 and 3. On initial use I actually think this works really well. I do agree that peoples profiles were getting far too cluttered and this enables you to see more easily the information you want. The first page is the wall and minifeed, and expansion on the original minifeed which includes photos and actual wall postings rather than just notifications. This will satisfy the avid facebook user who wants a snapshot of what everybody is up to and in a way brings Facebook and the status updates function closer to the Twitter concept.
The page layout has also changed slightly, with a reduction of content in the left hand margin whilst keeping the 3 column format. They remove this in the photos tab though and you get more of a full album view which makes photo browsing easier. It is also removed when viewing group and fan pages and the navigation which was once on the left has now moved to the header bar.
If I notice anything else interesting I will be sure to post it but the initial observation is that the objective of clean, clear, uncluttered layout has been achieved. I just hope to god that the point about profile control isnt going to lead to the flourescent flashing profile pages that make Myspace so annoying.