YouTube remake spotlights TV-style channels

By Agence France-Presse
Thursday, December 1, 2011 18:49 EDT
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SAN BRUNO, California — YouTube on Thursday unveiled a major redesign that showcases television-style channels and promises slicker integration with other Google online properties.

“We are trying hard to marry the best of TV and the best of online,” YouTube vice president of product development Shishir Mehrotra said while providing an early glimpse of the changes at the company’s offices in San Bruno.

“The term ‘online video’ is about to disappear as video becomes available to every device,” Mehrotra said.

To demonstrate the point, group product manager Shiva Rajaraman demonstrated a YouTube application that makes the website’s videos viewable on Microsoft’s Xbox 360 videogame consoles connected to the Internet.

The new YouTube home page features channels created by anyone from self-styled video lovers to professional television or movie studios.

A side panel provides YouTube users easy tools to find channels tailored to interests and then “pin” them as favorites to stay tuned into new offerings.

YouTube provides recommendations based on videos people watch or like.

The Google-owned service built in templates that can be used by video creators or people who create channels centered on what they consider worth watching.

“We think curators are going to be great for organizing this massive amount of content YouTube has,” said product manager A.J. Crane. “We are trying to make everyone an effective programmer on YouTube.”

YouTube even changed its well-known logo to be more modern and closer in style to those used at other Google services.

The redesign is being rolled out with an eye toward making YouTube look and work better on all Internet-linked devices from smartphones and tablets to television sets.

“This is really the largest redesign and largest launch in YouTube’s history,” said group product manager Noam Lovinsky.

“As we carry the redesign across the site and all kinds of devices it really changes the game for content providers,” Lovinsky said. “Everyone is going to be vying for that precious spot on the home page.”

Agence France-Presse
Agence France-Presse
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