I’m not one for criticizing, but when I look at Facebook (and I’m sure I’m not alone in this) I always think, could they have made this any uglier? Yes, there’s been couple of design changes over the course of nearly a decade, but has there ever been any serious improvement to its current state? No. It continues to remain just boring and ugly.
For the majority of web design company’s, such as ourselves, if a client approached you and asked for a redesign of their website, with their current site resembling Facebook (sub-standard, template-esque, littered with all kinds of crap left and right…feel free to insert your own adjectives), then you would be rubbing your hands together with glee! I know our designers would welcome the opportunity to breath a new lease of life into the website, but for reasons unknown to us, this doesn’t seem to be a priority for Facebook.
So why do they continue to utilize the current design? Well, there are a few possibilities.
First of all I have to agree with Anthony Wing Kosner in that Facebook’s justification for this is a combination of “not having a completely transparent intent” as well as “trying to squeeze a lot of functions in.” Secondly, there are so many different types of users, along with different types of content that creating a new and less bland appearance might run the risk of alienating it’s “older” generation of Facebook users.
Finally, Facebook’s design (at the end of the day) is meant to be a backdrop to all the sharing, posting, and commenting that goes on amongst you and your network of friends. It’s not meant to be the “Star of the Show.” BUT, what if, Facebook decided to create something new; something that might excite it’s 1 billion+ users? With all this talk of the future of the Internet going mobile, surely Facebook would want to jump on that and dominate, no?
Well, what about Fred Nurby’s creation?
Yes, yes. It’s very Windows 8 inspired, but just think how awesome this would be for mobile users! I for one hate using Facebook on my Tablet. It sucks. It really does. And as Mark keeps telling us, Facebook is always “focused on building the best experiences for people.” If it is, then maybe I missed a step somewhere?
I’ve been a Facebook user since 2006, and as I mentioned earlier there have been some design changes, but anything really significant? Yes, the Facebook Timeline was a big deal, but in terms of design? No. As far as I can remember there’s been nothing to shout home about.
So will 2013 be the year Facebook launches a new design to excite its legion of users? I’m not counting on it. What do you think?