Facebook Tweaks Redesign Tests as It Plans More Roadmap Roll-Outs

The latest Facebook redesign test screenshots have surfaced on a few users’ accounts, and in many ways they look like what we’ve seen before. Key Facebook communication channels — notifications, requests and messages — are appearing on the left side of the top navigation bar, a change that went into live testing at least a month ago. The new left-hand bookmark bar now appears, which is something Facebook showed previews of during its developer roadmap event earlier this fall.

But there are clearly some big, previously-unseen changes, at least judging by the screenshots that a French-language tech blog has seen.

Since the last test screenshots we saw, the search box has gotten a lot bigger, and moved from the right-hand side of the top navigation bar over next to the three communication channels. Facebook is increasing the priority of search this design — which should also mean an increased volume of real-time status updates searches as well. Meanwhile, the other items in the top bar have moved right. These include, from left to right: Home, Profile, Inbox, Friends and Account.

The current design also shows you your name in the top nav bar — although it takes you to the same place as Profile does. So the latest design takes out that redundancy. However, the new design now appears to duplicate the inbox, since that feature shows up as on icon on the left-hand side of the bar and in text (“Inbox”) on the right-hand side.

Notifications have until now included items from third-party applications. However, Facebook has separately said that it plans to remove third-party notifications. We assume that only Facebook’s own notifications now appear here, items such as likes, wall posts, comments, and photo tagging.

The Account tab now appears to include everything from the button until now known as Settings.

Among other changes, Photos appears to have a new interface. Instead of a window showing a few albums together with a chronological list of all photos you’re tagged in, you can now apparently view many photo albums at once. In the screenshots, you can also see a new sub-menu for Photos within the new bookmarks colum, where you can sort by things like recently tagged photos, or uploads.

Facebook’s Events app is also getting a change, appearing in the bookmark column and including sub-menus for friend’s events, birthdays and past events.

All in all, we’ve seen most of these changes before, in one form or another. But it’s still not clear which interface iteration will be the one to launch for everyone.

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