June 16, 2017Published by: Andrea Esteban Martín

Twitter cuts some shapes

Thursday afternoon saw a subtle new design shake up for Twitter as the platform announced a fresher, faster, lighter and more ‘rounded’ product. Previously unannounced, users quickly started sharing their (mostly hilarious) opinions using the hashtag #NewTwitter, and there’s been plenty of chatter ever since.

 

Grace Kim, VP of User Research & Design at Twitter, explained exactly which changes were made and why on Twitter’s official blog.

One of her key points is that in the past, some of the platform’s design choices were confusing for users, such as the reply arrow icon, or how heavy the icons felt, and she argues that with this new redesign they’ve been able to tackle the issues head on.

On the app for example, they’ve added a new navigation side menu, similar to the one that has been on Android for quite a while now, and it houses everything in one place. No more tapping around trying to find the notifications settings!

As always though, not everyone is comfortable with change, even if it’s small. That is a fact.

Through social media and the Internet everyone has a platform for expressing our opinions, good or bad, and it’s something that’s clearly shaping the design process for different sites.

That’s why, yesterday, users made sure their opinions were heard. Some asked for edit buttons, save .gif options, more edit buttons, and others just compared the new designs side by side with the old version, and realised it really wasn't that bad.

From a business side of things, it’s becoming more and more obvious for brands that the look and feel of their online presence is vital, and on Twitter this new design means that  countless brand, product and spokespeople profiles are now taking a different shape.

That not only means that designers, like me, are busier making sure all of those profiles look as sharp as they used, but, also, checking the platform has not made other changes, like in-stream image sizes without announcing them (that happened once before!).

Personally though, changes are exciting. It makes things flow and although there are always going to be opinions, it is great that platforms as big as Twitter are considering user feedback. It might take a few days for us to adapt, but with change comes growth, and this is definitely not the end of the world.

 

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