I am not sure whether it’s a deliberate release by Facebook or just came to me as a bug but I have noticed major changes in the functionality and the UI of “News Feed” section. At this point of time, I am also not sure whether this is a world-wide release or roll-out will be in phases for millions of users as traditional process of Facebook. However, I must pat Facebook for making cool “News Feed” section pretty impressive, simple and attractive.
The new News Feed section has been divided into three frames. The overall achievement from this roll out seems to draw more attention towards news’ by using ‘intelligent’ scrolling and framing methods.
Unlike “Profile” section, there are no more sponsored ads or suggestions on right panel now. Going further, the right panel has been complete dedicated to “latest News Trends” titled as “Happening Now” which showcases the most active and responsive news’/updates of your network. Intelligently, the scrolling of this section has been isolated than other part of the page scrolling to keep users focused on latest news.
On the similar ground, the left panel remains complete unmovable, irrespective of News section or overall page scrolling. Unlike “Happening Now” section, this panel don’t have its own scrolling section which stretches as per the information by its own.
Company has linked the overall page scroll directly with the middle section which holds latest news and updates.
I found such changes much valuable and important as with the growing trend of news share and blogging, people were losing pace with the information flow on “News feed” section.The fish-out of all bolt-ons from this section will allow people to stay focused on latest trend and information.
To make the trending – rather “Happening Now” – section more effective and accessible, Facebook has opted the pop up method. You click on any news or update from respective section and the complete sequential thread will display in a pop up which would allow to have complete coverage of the story in a glance. You can like, update, play video and perform rest all set of activities related to such news/update in that pop-up window – without ditching current “News Feed” page.
In a similar move, last week Facebook silently rolled out a controversial “Auto Face Recognition & Tagging” feature which has been criticized by many people and online security analysts.
Update 1: As expected, sponsored ad section is back on the News Feed section, just above the “Happening Now”. It’s true no one wants to lose a penny !!
Update 2: Facebook has clarified on its new feature, giving an insight into what the “Now Happening” section will deliver:
“We are currently testing a feature within News Feed that gives people the ability to see what their friends are commenting on and “liking”, as these actions are being taken on Facebook.
This test includes a small percentage of Facebook users, just a fraction of a percent. In the coming weeks, as we learn more from this test, we’ll keep making improvements and may expand it to more people.”