Facebook are going to start rolling out a new design for their famous news feed.

You may be most familiar with the design below:

Or you may have spent the last year / few months looking at this:

Personally I never got the design above – when it started appearing for Tom last year I assumed it was a new design that was being rolled out and I’d get it sooner or later. Now it ends up that apparently Facebook were trialling it but have decided against it.

So instead they’ve found what seems like a half way point of:

And this new design will apparently be on all of our screens shortly.

Personally, whilst in principle I prefer the idea of the white boxes per news item as it’s much more modern than the boring plain white page I’m used to, the new design feels a little cramped to me. I know it will very much depend on your screen size as to how the columns sit but it does feel like there’s quite a lot going on. I also feel like the white-boxes-on-grey mean the ads stand out a lot more. But I’m sure that’s no accident!

The font size on the darker design which didn’t make the cut always feels a bit too large to me (when I glance over Tom’s shoulder to see it) but I did feel that any images really stood out on it. And personally I think 3 columns works as well as 4 but I guess they decided that overall the live feed should be kept.

What do you think? Do you like the new design? Did you prefer the old, or the test?