After Eight Years, The New York Times gets a Major Redesign and It Will Be The Last

Articles January 9, 2014

Cleaner, sleeker and a whole lot better web experience. That is the agenda of the recently unveiled and could be the last redesign of the New York Times.

The last time New York Times did a major redesign on their website was in 2006.  Back then smartphones and tablets are just a thing of the future. The web we know today is just a dream to most designers back then before and Myspace ruled the social networking world before Facebook came in. Eight years after, The New York Times has finally decided to do a major face-lift for their website and it is gaining a huge interest specially in the journalism community.

New-York-Times-Redesign-001

BEFORE AND AFTER: A side by side comparison of the old (viewed using Wayback Machine) and new design of the New York Times

Users who frequently the website will find that the new design is sleeker and has adopted a minimalist style when it comes to the design. According to Dennis Warren Executive Vice President of the digital products and services group of the New York Times in an article in CNN ”We’ve redesigned our article pages and restyled our homepage and section fronts to provide a cleaner, more engaging user experience.” 

Here’s a video about the redesign:

Sticking with a grid based design much like how newspaper are, the changes are much noticeable in the article pages themselves. Readers can now definitely enjoy a seamless reading experience. The article pages are simplified, instead of bombarding readers with suggested articles on the left and right side bars the pages gives more focus to the article itself. The sections are now simplified in a menu other than that users can browse the articles from a slider resting on top of the page.  While the suggested articles such as Most-Emailed and Top Topics are now placed at the bottom of the articles.  This frees up a lot of space which helps in focusing the reader to the articles themselves without too many distraction but not to the point of having no where else to go.

New York Times Website Redesign

New York Times Website Redesign

Going from one article after the other is only a click to the left or right buttons on screen or via the arrow keys. Another notable change in the site design is that the articles are now in a one page format meaning, there is no need to go to page 2, 3 and so forth in order to read the whole article. The better and optimized navigation system of the Times definitely gives the readers an uninterrupted reading experience. With the new design mobile readers won’t have a hard time getting their Times fix thanks to a responsive design. This will give the on-the-reader the access to the New York Times website using any mobile device.

New York Times Website Redesign

Apart from the redesign, Warren has mentioned that there will be more updates such as faster loading times to come in the future. He also indicated that this will be the last major redesign of the age old publication. In an article from Fast Company, Warren said “We have completely replatformed the whole back-end technology system so that we can get out of the business of doing redesigns.” With larger images, crisp texts, a responsive design, sleeker and cleaner layout the Times’ redesign is a good way to start the 2014. Not forgetting 2013′s Snowfall special feature despite the clashes of those who liked the feature from those who don’t, we can definitely see that the New York Times geared up to harness the latest technologies and use it to deliver an amazing storytelling experience.

With the Times is starting to depend on their 700,000 digital subscribers, there is one thing that they should take note of: will the new design appeal to their readers old and new alike?

 

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 Patrick Jude Ilagan

Patrick Jude Ilagan is a graphic designer/photographer hailing from the vast jungles of urban Manila. Always on the look out for visually appealing stuff he scours the internet and the bustling city in search of inspiration. His tools for mass creation is a Canon 500D along with a wide array of lights and lenses plus a 4 year old (but still fighting) laptop. Check out his work here.

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