If you are a Twitter user, you probably noticed a few changes on the outline of your homepage. While it still looks the same, a little option is seen down below for selected users and newcomers to the platform: the chance to try out the new layout of the site and a good number of new options that are currently being beta tested before being implemented full time. You will be able to track the original tweeter on a post by using a tag, there will also be changes to the news briefs, and conversations will be easier to follow on the feed.
Existing features are also being experimented on, with users now being able to use a newly improved night mode, as well as encrypted messaging and a brand new way to use GIFs to answer people in a conversation. Let’s take a moment to list and dig deeper on what we have seen so far until now:
Seeing News, Friends, and Highlights
There is a new addition to the side navigation bar on Twitter: now you can see developing news, recent tweets from friends, and highlights from popular accounts separately. The company hasn’t explained the work behind the mechanics used here, but they seem to be a whole new way to filter the content you get in your timeline. The option “friends” so far seems to show the tweets of people who follow you and who you follow back.
· New GIF reactions
Twitter seems to be updating the use of GIFs to reply to a specific comment on a thread. There is a new option aptly named “react with GIF.” Twitter already features a shortcut to add a GIF on a tweet, but the new option seems to be focused on adding a GIF on top of a retweet, something that wasn’t possible until now.
· Drag and Drop Interface Revamped
Twitter is currently testing a tweak to their main interface on the desktop version of the site that would allow users to drag and drop image files from their computers. The app seems to have the same feature to manage gestures. You can also move around the compose button and place it at your convenience on the screen. This change seems to be made for purely cosmetic purposes, but it’s nice to be able to place elements that disturb you on the screen where they don’t cause any trouble.
· Improvements to Night Mode
There are also two updates to the popular night mode that uses a dark color scheme against the white text. The first one is a full black background instead of the dark blue tones currently used. This is great news for people using their phones in full light settings in darkened rooms since it won’t hurt the eyes as much.
· New Encryption for Direct Messages
It’s a rumor to this date, but it seems that Twitter is finally placing a feature to allow DMs to accounts you don’t follow with a new level of encryption as well as retaining the rights on the user’s end to receive them or not.