YouTube testing new website design

YouTube has long been included in the modern history of the Internet and over time, the site has been open to several design changes that enhance the user experience. It would appear however that the site, which is owned by Google, is currently testing a new design which represents a departure from the traditional layout.

The new design can be found at the site's TestTube section, which is named Cosmic Panda and has a distinctly darker theme that users may opt into trying out. While there are many adjustments that have been made in the new design, there are several features which have primarily contributed to the overall shift in focus. Firstly, the site layout and graphics have changed which means for most at least, there will be a better viewing experience thanks to bigger video thumbnails and a darker background. Furthermore, YouTube has paid particular attention to changing the layout and information displayed on a user's channel page as seen below.

YouTube has essentially offered a greater set of tools for uploaders to customize their channels by having the option of more layouts available to choose from. More so, there is now a community tab which displays the latest social information relevant to that channel, with an appearance that is reminiscent of several social networking sites. Amongst other new features such as selecting the video size, thumbnails have been increased and indeed introduced into the video comments area.

When the design is planned to be made the default theme for the site is unclear, but for those that are keen to try out the design, YouTube are offering users the ability to provide feedback in a method that is both interactive and easy. It is interesting to note that there are several alterations to the design which are familiar to the new theme Google is rolling out to all of its services, specifically Google+. This update represents Google's efforts to achieve a similar brand image among its most popular websites.

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39 Comments

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How do you send a private message to a user on this new design?! If I go to his channel, all I see is the subscribe button.

Ha, that explains the black player I got last week

As for the new design, about time, we all knew it would come now when the rest of the sites got an update.
But still, for YouTube and the rest of googles sites it's about time the desktop versions get an update, the mobile/tablet sites have been looking and in some cases (gmail) even working better for quite a while now

The black background helps the video stand out, but I don't like the divide between the black and white areas of the page. It looks amateurish.

I really like the new look its more fresh and strimlined, plus much more easier to watch your videos and search the info.and the combination of the colours goes well. I am liking the fact that google is changing its services to a more nicer and visual look.

I just noticed that this new interface will automatically play the next video from that user...

Is it just me or is that the most idiotic thing to put as a default setting?

unbelievable.

Looks nice I guess. Love YouTube, another website that changed how videos were played on line. Helped kill off that god damned awful RealPlayer!

SK[ said,]Looks nice I guess. Love YouTube, another website that changed how videos were played on line. Helped kill off that god damned awful RealPlayer!

Exactly. RealPlayer was a joke. Flash Player is a improvement but they still could be using far more efficient stuff like XviD as XviD has good quality video and is quite CPU efficient.

I REALLY hate controls pop up on mouse over. I know it saves screen space and looks neater, but it just irritates me.

Lamp0 said,
I REALLY hate controls pop up on mouse over. I know it saves screen space and looks neater, but it just irritates me.
+1 Same here.

Few annoying quirks
1. The 3rd video size I thought would be the biggest width size of your monitor but even goes too big and won't let you scroll.
2. NO SUBSCRIBE BUTTON! You have to go to the channel page and stop the video to subscribe.
3. TOO MUCH SCROLLING, seriously. Uploads were in groups of 5 and you could find the one you want, now 1 per row it takes forever!

TechDudeGeorge said,
Few annoying quirks
1. The 3rd video size I thought would be the biggest width size of your monitor but even goes too big and won't let you scroll.
2. NO SUBSCRIBE BUTTON! You have to go to the channel page and stop the video to subscribe.
3. TOO MUCH SCROLLING, seriously. Uploads were in groups of 5 and you could find the one you want, now 1 per row it takes forever!

I think the design will be a Win if they get rid of the Hulu Elements other than that The Graphics is Impressive

I like the look of this design, I really think the site needed a big upfate because visually it's miles behind other sites. Not sure if im a fan of the widescreen player by default.

I know some people will complain but IMO it looks like MUCH MUCH MUCH more improvement the sad thing about it though... it looks like Hulu so I guess instead of GoogleTube you can call it Hulutube

remixedcat said,
doesn't seem as widescreen oreinted as the current layout. it looks good but it's awkward.

it's not as bad as I thought it would be.. they actually have more than the 3 size choices now.. besides fullscreen there are now 4 screen sizes + full screen..

Thanks for the info. Trying it out right now. My channel looks horrible o_O...Well, it's OK, but the video thumbnails are ginormously stretched. I like the new comment section. Overall it's kind of nice. This is the first time YouTube has made a change that I didn't resort to some sort of Super Saiyan rage.