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Google News Makeover for Desktop

     
12:36 pm on Jun 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Google has redesigned Google News for desktop which it claims is better for readability.

Personally, i don;'t like it, but it's done and i'll have to get used to it.

What do you think?
[blog.google...]
1:36 pm on June 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Coming soon, the redesign for this bad redesign :)

As much as I dislike this new design, I think this design partially uncovers the direction that Google sees the internet is moving. This desktop design seems like it was designed more with a mobile user & touchscreen in mind. It also seems like Google is trying to make their site "stickier" to hold onto users longer. For example instead of showing the top story & linking out, Google is now pushing related topics which would keep the user on the site longer. I think those trends are good to keep in mind when designing my own sites.
2:04 pm on June 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I don't think it is great, but with Google, they have the numbers to carry out side by side testing even with groups ever a period of time. The data must be telling them something good. Usability is fine, it just doesn't look good to the eye. I dare say it will grow on us.

Mack.
2:52 pm on June 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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For example instead of showing the top story & linking out, Google is now pushing related topics which would keep the user on the site longer.


The new design actually shows much smaller snippets of information; it now shows only the page title, whereas before it showed the title and a snippet of text (not sure where that text was from).
Google could be getting nervous about EU regulators.
3:26 pm on June 28, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Yes, glitterball, exactly what I was thinking, too. Showing less of the story may help it comply with the many publishers that feel too much is repeated in the news serps.

If I had more time i'd dig into the fact check a little more closely, but it should help users get a better idea.

There seems to be, roughly, the same number of stories, but the "highly cited" and "most referenced" appearing as a short headline and link, with no coverage for the others without clicking the down arrow.

"Editors picks," and "spotlight" appear on the right, with plenty of white space everywhere. Ads coming?
4:20 pm on June 30, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I liked the old layout(s) better, but as a former magazine editor, I know that readers often resist change. I imagine I'll get used to the new layout as time goes by.
4:30 pm on June 30, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The one thing I miss is the stock chart on the business page.

It must be around somewhere, but I can't find it.
4:40 pm on June 30, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I can't think of one big website that did their "responsive" redesign causing all out complaints by long time visitors, yet turn around and modify their decision. It's not like anyone is going out to a different news source. It's not like you can find another big website that doesn't suck on a desktop or non mobile sized display either. Everyone is turning ugly for desktop. When you lack choice, you get what you get. I love the "it will grow on me". Yeah, so do many other hideous actions on humans. We can adjust to anything. But for web designs? What a complacent bunch. Too bad we can't find a design from a competitor that doesn't suck. Rather we need to "get used to it". Lame. Concern about regulators? I dunno, name something that isn't money/ad motivated? There has to be a monetization aspect that is not yet unveiled. Follow the money.
5:00 pm on June 30, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I'm still struggling with it.

There appears to be a great deal more scrolling, and that's not a good thing, imho.
9:10 pm on June 30, 2017 (gmt 0)

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One thing I just noticed is a new "Fact Check" section with links to items (both political and non-political) at Snopes, Politifact, the Washington Post, etc.
4:48 am on July 1, 2017 (gmt 0)

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There appears to be a great deal more scrolling, and that's not a good thing, imho.
For mobile, there are many usability people who have decided just the opposite... that scrolling is the easiest and fastest way to navigate. Particularly true for the demographic that's grown up with mobile only. (One of the main bits of customization Google News offers is to hide sections and/or to rearrange them.)

I agree that lots of scrolling is not a good thing for desktop, and for mobile I'm not part of the prime demographic, but I see young mobile users missing lots of stuff.

I consume most of my news online now, on a desktop... or in printed magazines where I have that access. One of the things I love about printed newspapers is that the visual scanning is different than it is on a monitor. You can look at a page of a printed edition, one with many stories on, say, the front page, and take it all in. With printed newspapers, the "unit", so to speak, was the whole newspaper.

With online news, even on desktop, the unit is the article, and on a phone, I think they're feeling that rapid scrolling, with a fair amount of white space, is the best way to scan.

4:38 pm on July 1, 2017 (gmt 0)

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With online news, even on desktop, the unit is the article, and on a phone, I think they're feeling that rapid scrolling, with a fair amount of white space, is the best way to scan.

That makes sense to me. I'm no spring chicken, and I didn't even own a smartphone until last November, but I now read most of my news on a Nexus 6P and have become a whiz at high-speed scrolling. (I doubt if I'll ever learn how to type with my thumbs, though.)
3:11 pm on July 3, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Well it's only been a few days and already I have stopped using Google News - and I'd been using it from nearly the start.
It was one of the first pages that I'd look at with my cup of coffee in the morning for many years.

Without that extra bit of scraped text under the headline, it's pretty much useless - a timely reminder that Google does not actually produce content itself and is really just a scraper. Is this the shape of things to come?

I remember thinking a few years ago when Google News pulled out of Spain, that it was a big mistake on Spain's part. I was wrong. There is an ecosystem here and a balance needs to be found that encourages and rewards the creation of quality content. Scraping text for free and stealing images does not do that.
4:50 pm on July 3, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I've continued to try and get on with it, but, it'm still not yet used to its.

This change by Google has prompted me to try other sources.

There's a stack out there, and some great aggregators, if that's what you're after.
5:56 pm on July 3, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@engine So what are the other sources?
7:46 pm on July 3, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Like the change so much I no longer use Google News.
9:59 am on July 5, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Stab Poke Slide Slide Poke Stab....

Mobile white space strikes again.

We've long known that what comes around comes around again. Welcome to the 1990s
10:04 am on July 5, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I like Bing's approach much better.
11:25 am on July 5, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@glitterball, a search will bring many up, and they have differing formats depending upon your requirements.
2:21 pm on July 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I use my desktop to browse the internet whenever possible and I find it ugly to be honest. Mobile design, these days, seems to mean slap a bubble around it.
 

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