YouTube update delivers early Christmas present to users
Regular visitors to online video website YouTube will have seen that the site received what developers have called a "fresh coat of digital paint".
In an official blog post, the video giant outlined three key areas that received an update yesterday (December 1) – the homepage, channels and overall design of the site.
While the substantial overhaul was completed with an emphasis on streamlining the actual video page, the front page of YouTube has become much busier as it focuses on connecting the site with other social media platforms.
Now featuring three vertical columns, the stark white page also features a touch of grey and a subtle Google influence in its aesthetics.
The left of the site now has the ability to be customised to feature a viewer's favourite channels – allowing them to monitor the videos being posted by their social networks contacts.
Users can select videos in specific channels or genres such as entertainment and music, plus "popular" and "trending" videos – a reference to features on social media sites such as Facebook and Twitter.
Selected channels now also encourage users to "follow" content creators, much like any other social network.
The centre column of the new home page is where videos can be played – the selection will change as viewers move from channel to channel in the left-hand column.
The far right column offers video recommendations – a feature that YouTube has utilised for the past few years.
Content producers have also been offered changes to the video sharing tool, with new templates made freely available.
"As different uploaders have different goals, we've created new Channel templates to meet your needs whether you produce one video a week or have thousands of videos for a fan to browse," the site said in its blog post.