The new three-column user experience is officially out, whether you like it or not. No more rolling back to the previous look. It brought itself some welcome improvements, as far as the desktop version is concerned.
The new Messages interface now looks more like a simplified e-mail interface than a crude popup window. They could do away with the “wizard-like” new message composition step. And perhaps increase the size of the message box instead of just a thin single-line text input, since uses are allowed to send long messages and even in paragraph format.
Thank godness it’s on the sidebar and not floating on the timeline like a horrible eyesore.
It’s great that they let users decide how users want to see Tweets, like personalized trends and location preferences. Some users prefer to consume information organically and not be “manipulated” as the platform wish.
The new three-column layout isn’t horrible. At least Twitter is no longer trying to imitate Facebook. The toolbar is gone and is now replaced with a left sidebar. The buttons are definitely arranged to influence consumption of in-house content, like, #Explore sits right under “Home.” The logical thing would be to place “Profile” and the “Tweet” button on the top. And “Home” should be called “Feed” or “Timeline” and placed right under “Profile.”That to me seems more functional, at least as far as my usage goes. The function of the Twitter logo and “Home” are redundant, and they’re next to each other. Why? Lastly, Media, Search, Trends, recommendations and all things “propaganda” are stacked on the right-most column. While tweet feeds are in the middle. There’s no option to rearrange the layout or change the width of the columns. The “Trend” column is too thick while the “Feeds” column feels to narrow and constricting. Would be nice to collapse the “Trends” and “Who to follow” boxes too. And for the tweets in the feed, it’s all good. It would be nice to separate the “Retweet” and “Retweet with comments” instead of using a popup menu. There’s so much space on that line. Besides, both are frequently used by Tweeps to justify it. And it makes more sense to place the emoji button on the side of the input box instead of the bottom. It’s an awkward distance to access while typing, especially when replying to a Tweet that’s long with embedded media.
There’s very little option available to change the look and feel. Users can only change the Font size, Color and Background.
I’m on a high speed wired broadband internet connection. I’m using a fast gaming notebook and Chrome, yet, Twitter switches screens way too slow for a big tech. company.
The new layout is not horrible. However, it feels strange that the twitter feed column seems to be given less emphasis with the extra large sidebar buttons on the sidebar and a thick third columns.
The previous layout, with the exception for the DM screen, is better because the Tweet feed took center stage. And I like that, because at the end of the day, that’s what I’m there for and that’s the information I’m consuming.
On a related note, Twitter’s Media Studio looks sparkly. The Broadcasts feature is a very good feature. I can’t wait to try its features out. I just don’t have a need for them yet. And for some features, I already use automation tools I wrote that does what I need with very little effort.
[ Update ]
The sidebar menu will change into a compact bar if the browser width goes below 1,280 pixels. So that’s a bit of a relief.
And one annoying thing about tweeting in the new layout is, if you’re trying to catch up on your feeds, and you’re hours behind, as soon as you post a reply to a tweet it automatically scrolls you to the latest tweet at the top. So you have to scroll back down on your timeline to the point where it yanked you. The emojis at the bottom of the Tweet composition box is a nuisance. It also doesn’t function as good as the previous layout. It takes a few clicks to get the right emoji to actually show up on the tweet.