If you are following the chatter on social networking sites such as Google+, Facebook or Twitter, you may have noticed that YouTube is currently testing a new homepage design. Clever folks found out a way to enable the new design right now with a cookie. The advantage of this method is that you can clear the cookie to return to the old YouTube interface, no harm done.
Please note that this is being tested right now by Google. This new test homepage may or may not become the new YouTube homepage in the future. For now, YouTube visitors can enable it in the following way:
- Open the YouTube website.
- In Chrome, press Ctrl-Shift-j to open the Developer Tools
- In Firefox, press Ctrl-Shift-k to open the web console
document.cookie="VISITOR_INFO1_LIVE=ST1Ti53r4fU";in the console tab and press Enter.
- Reload the YouTube page.
It is likely that this is working in other web browsers as well. I could not get it to work in the latest Opera web browser though.
The YouTube homepage looks like this after a reload.
YouTube users find their channel information prominently displayed on the left side. Listed here are links to the channel videos, likes, history and watch later groups, subscription information, YouTube specific information like trending or what's popular as well as suggested channels to subscribe to.
The middle column is filled with updates from a user's subscriptions. The right column finally displays recommended videos based on past videos that have been watched and activities on YouTube.
The new design seems to only affect the homepage and no other parts of the site. Several users seem to confuse the new YouTube homepage design with the previously released Cosmic Panda update. They are not the same and can in fact be run at the same time. I would suggest to first enable the new homepage design and then enable Cosmic Panda via the link above.
What I do not like about the new homepage is that it uses a fixed width for the content. If you have a widescreen monitor you end up with lots of whitespace there.
Have you tried the new homepage? If so, what is your opinion? I'm not sure where this all started, but one of the first, if not the first, to point it out was Moritz Tolxdorff on Google+.
And while we are at it. If you want to try out the new YouTube video uploader, you need to open the following web address: http://upload.youtube.com/my_videos_upload?forceui=4.
Update: You can remove the new YouTube homepage again by repeating the steps and changing the cookie command to this one: