February 13, 2014
Twitter has been quietly introducing a major profile redesign, one which is similar in ways to Facebook and Google+. This new layout gives more space to header photos, and shifts profile pictures to the left. It also makes tweeted photos much bigger. The change includes a revamped tweet stream and a focus on images and content cards. CEO Dick Costolo said the new layout is part of the company’s effort to make Twitter easier to navigate for new users.
“It’s common for Twitter to quietly test new features and design updates before tweaking or rolling it out to a larger user base,” reports Mashable. “Experiments typically go out to a small, random pool of users.”
The new Twitter stream has a greater focus on content cards and photos, and moves away from the strictly vertical timeline. Underneath the header photo is a navigation bar including the number of the user’s tweets, photos/videos, who the individual is following, followers, lists, and favorites.
The recommended size of the new header photo is 1500 x 500 pixels, different than the current 1252 x 626 pixels, so users will need to update this to avoid distorted header photos.
After weeks of testing, Twitter launched the new design to a small number of random users on February 11, and will be rolling it out to more users in the next few days.
“This Facebook-esque change is particularly interesting in light of Twitter’s most recent earnings call, in which CEO Dick Costolo admitted that Twitter was difficult for new users to navigate,” reports Business Insider. “He said that Twitter was taking steps to make its user interface easier for newbies to use. Making it look more like Facebook — which most people are used to — might reflect those efforts.”