Google today unveiled a new look for its 14-year-old news reader that makes the web service much easier to digest. The Google News page now has three sections located at the center of the homepage: a top headlines list, a local list, and a personalized “For You” section containing stories in interest areas you’ve preselected. These efforts will go a long way in helping Google stay competitive with mobile-first news readers like Apple News and the built-in news delivery mechanisms of Facebook and Twitter.
Borrowing some elements from its mobile app and search engine design philosophy, Google has also transitioned the news reader to a card-based interface. That way, every story gets its own clutter-free rectangle with links to related coverage and subjects and more prominent photo placement, as well as more thoughtful placement of key information points like article source, headline, and publish time.
“Every day people come to Google News for a trusted view of the world. It’s there for everything from moments of political change to gripping sports events to daily local news,” wrote Anand Paka, Google News’ product manager, in a blog post published this afternoon. “To make news more accessible and easier to navigate, we redesigned the desktop website with a renewed focus on facts, diverse perspectives, and more control for users.”
As part of the redesign, the company is also adding a fact-checking bar on the right side of the desktop version of Google News so users can get daily updates from bipartisan sites like PolitFact and Snopes. These changes are all mostly centered on the desktop version. But some elements have already made their way to mobile version of the service, including the card-based interface, Paka confirmed.