Twitter may be working on a significant redesign of its Web site meant to make the service look more like Facebook.
Mashable reported Tuesday that one of its editors spotted an all-new design of the Twitter home page that appears aimed at mimicking the look and feel of Facebook.
According to Mashable, the new Twitter profile page has the avatar photo and biography placed well to the left side of the page and devotes a lot of space to the header photo.
The design, which Mashable suggested only affects the desktop version of Twitter, also seems to make tweets much larger. All in all, this is clearly intended to make it easier for users to digest tweets, and perhaps to attract users who have more experience on Facebook.
While the change isn't widespread yet, it's evident that it's something the social network would be considering as a way to drum up new users, and to retain existing ones. In the meantime, other news sites, including The Wire and Business Insider have also reported first-hand sightings of the redesign.
In its first-ever quarterly earnings report last week, Twitter reported that although it had made its first-ever quarterly profit -- not counting hundreds of millions of dollars it paid out in stock-based compensation -- it also had slowing user growth. Wall Street concerns about that slowing trend led to Twitter's stock plummeting in the aftermath of the earnings report.
In its conference call with analysts, Twitter senior management insisted that they understand that their current user experience is difficult for new users, and that they are going to be rolling out new features over the next year intended to improve that experience. In addition, the company put up a blog post last September saying it does experiment with new features from time to time. This redesign may well be evidence of such efforts
Twitter declined to comment for this story.
Initial reaction among users seemed to be generally negative about the potential redesign. Tweets, such as one from @handeebks that read, "DEAR TWITTER: I love you bc you AREN'T like Facebook. Don't f**k that up. Love, Me" were the norm in the wake of the Mashable report.
Update, 2:58 p.m. PT: Notes that The Wire and Business Insider have also reported seeing the redesign.