I toured around Google+ that had gotten the new layout – these were my first thoughts:
- The new layout isn’t any simpler or more beautiful than the old one, quite the opposite.
- It would be diplomatic to warn users on their profiles and pages about all bigger changes in the system (like Facebook has done, at least lately).
- If continuing like this, Google+ risks wearing out users with too frequent and big changes (like Facebook has done).
- Google+ would benefit of thinking less like an engineer (lot of nifty features) and more like a psychologist (usability of the key features). Eg posts about the “whitespace” raised some worries, although many of them were hilarious as jokes.
- Listening to feedback from different kind of users (not only advertisers) and encouraging engagement among users are worth cherishing.
I’ve liked Google+ so far and I wish it will stay as one of my favourite apps in future, too.
Google Blog: Toward a simpler, more beautiful Google
Google+: Trey Harris (post about “whitespace” 12.4.2012)
Google+: Tiina Niskanen (my profile in the new layout)
Edit 16.1.2013: Statistics on Google url shortener http://goo.gl/OuM3g+