YouTube is currently testing a brand new homepage design that, among other things, puts a lot of emphasis on channels. Considering YouTube’s recent announcements regarding a push for quality content through new channels, it should come as no surprise that thy would try to build an interface with this focus.
The new layout contains a sort-of dashboard-like bar on the left. This area sports all of your subscriptions, as well as suggested channels and the ability to look at popular and trending videos across all of YouTube.
One of the best things about this new setup is that when you click on a specific channel, its video stream pops up in the middle column. There’s no navigation away from the homepage until you click on a video.
Clicking to “add channels” opens up a new channel directory, where you can easily subscribe to channels based on category. These subscriptions will appear on your homepage subscription feed. It appears as though the channel uploads will be displayed by the time of the upload, with option to expand the time frame to include more videos on the feed.
Another element of that dashboard is all the social stuff. As you can see, Google+ is front and center. Videos posted by people you follow on Google+ are incorporated into the new subscriptions stream, a feature that we hinted at last week. There is also the option to quickly connect to other networks like Facebook and Twitter. You can go into your sharing options to choose what kind of seamless sharing you will allow between YouTube various social sites. “Activity Sharing” can include letting Facebook or Twitter know when you like a video, comment on a video, subscribe to a channel and more.
If you want to see the new YouTube homepage, you’ll have to do a little work yourself. Open up YouTube and if you’re using Chrome, press ctrl+shift+j to open developers tools. If you’re using Firefox, hit ctrl+shift+k. Enter document.cookie=”VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE=ST1Ti53r4fU”; and press enter. Hard reload the page. It should now be in the test layout.
If you want to go back to the old YouTube, open your browser’s cookie manager, search for youtube.com and delete the VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE cookie, says Google Operating System.
Have you looked at the new layout? What do you think? Let us know in the comments.