Brief review of the new Yahoo web site

Yahoo made a layout change again, so let's take a look of the design decisions they've made. In this brief review I want to explain the advantages and disadvantages of the new version from my point of view. You are free to make your own opinion.

The following screenshots will settle the context:

Yahoo before/after
Figure 1: The old vs. the new version of the Yahoo website

Yahoo popups
Figure 2: Sample interactions on the new Yahoo website

Observations

We notice that the left menu became wider and its icons now are more prominent. The search engine was emphasized through the applied contour. The header height decreased, which increased the viewable area. The tabs at the top of the middle column have been omitted in favor of the news, which are supported by bigger corresponding images. The news tab below, shows more links; the line spacing has been increased, improving legibility. Below the search engine, you see a small avatar and the message "Hi, [your name]", making the relationship more personal. These are all nice improvements.

Use

Conclusion

The new Yahoo website has a very clean and modern design, but the user interaction is awkward. Dynamically generating overlays through client-server interaction is slow and affects the accessibility of the information—both on the overlay and underneath it. A better solution would have been to load another page, showing users all the options they currently have, but this will require a change in the information architecture.

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