Should the saying “another day, another dollar” be changed to “another day, another Facebook change”?
Facebook has recently announced once again it’s giving the user interface a cosmetic makeover, this time by focusing on the visuals like competitors Pinterest and Instagram.
Your News Feed is being revamped to get rid of clutter and present “bright, beautiful” stories whether they are insights from friends or trending news of the day. “I think there is a special place in the world for this sort of personalised newspaper,” Facebook co-founder and CEO Mark Zuckerberg said in introducing the overhauled News Feed at a press event at its California headquarters.
Photos now make up to 50% of the content posted on Facebook, and Mark Zuckerberg and Facebook team believe the new News Feed should reflect that. Mark Zukerberg said that when Facebook first launched, it was primarily about text but the rise of smartphones has slowly changed the dominant content over time from text to photos and videos.
“How we’re all sharing is changing and the news feed needs to evolve with those changes. This is the evolving face of news feed.”
The new News Feed gives users better control over content, ideally turning every user into a content creator. Its new look is visually stunning, and whether you’re looking at a photo or a news story, Facebook said it wanted people to know what they’re looking at straight away, meaning fewer words, more images.
So What’s New?
The new News Feed focuses on 3 main changes – bigger images, multiple feeds and providing the same look across all devices
Facebook is taking a page out of Instagram’s book (which they purchased in April 2012) by providing a similar chronological, image based feed (they own so its not copying)
Facebook is separating out the kinds of content you view, creating separate news feeds for different kinds of content. You can switch between feeds by using a column on the right hand side of the page which separates content into categories such as music, video or photos. Separating out the news feeds gives users more control over how they are displayed.
You can also choose to view a news feed of close friends, everyone on your feed, or just certain key people. The feeds will be listed in chronological order (rather than the top stories which uses Edge Rank to decide what content is most relevant to you), meaning you won’t miss out on posts by your friends.
Keeping it Mobile
The new interface will be the same across mobile, and desktop.
The same look, different device is an important move for Facebook which has struggled to figure out how it can make mobile advertising work effectively for advertisers.
It was announced in January Facebook had more active mobile users than desktop users so finding a way to include targeted advertising on mobile is essential.
Facebook has made a savvy move with the new look, it gives you better control over content, however it’s also becoming clear how Facebook is going to better utilise paid advertising. The new look allows for targeted advertising to sit in the News Feed alongside your friends’ posts, not so easily ignored like currently.
When to bunker down
Like all changes, Facebook will to roll out these changes, starting today in areas of the US. The social network said it wanted to be careful and slow about rolling out its new look.
Stay tuned to your News Feed, these changes will be rolled out abroad in the coming weeks.