YouTube’s Panda goes Cosmic

Note: Awww the panda is so cute holding a Lightsaber, a future Jedi I suppose.

Cosmic Panda is the longtime coming redesign of YouTube by Google. The most popular video sharing site on the internet is streamlining their interface to give it an even more visual punch than it had before. Anyone with a YouTube account can test Cosmic Panda here (you can switch back at any time). The theme is darker than the current design and the most drastic change occurs when you are on the page of a video. They try to simplify the layout and give YouTube a more visual focus.

The thumbnails of videos are larger and widescreen. The larger size gives them much more dominance on the page. While the current incarnation of YouTube is clean with a white backdrop,cosmic panda uses a very subtle light grey and a dark grey as the primary colours. Even the logo itself has had  the red darkened to match the change in the overall look and feel of the site. The dark grey surrounds the video like a border. It reminds me of the black bars you would see on some films. The dark grey draws your attention and focus to the video itself giving the video a more cinematic feel than it ever before.

One of the new elements is the ability to customize the layout of your own personal channel. Cosmic Panda allows you to choose from several layout styles that suit your content and is based on the amount of content you have and the emphasis you which your channel to have. I have to say I really like the change. It is more slick and modern and more cinematic which makes a lot of sense with their move into rentals, live steaming for certain channels, and giving content creating more flexibility.

It seems that Google has revamped the layout and design of many of their products while introducing new ones at an ever faster rate. Gmail is also testing layout changes, +1’s are in the wild on the web, and Google +1 is bringing Google in direct competition with Faacebook. The overall changes on YouTube and some of Google’s other products simplify and modernize their look while functioning as it always have and this is especially true for YouTube.

Great job Google, I can’t wait for this the panda to roll out to the masses. Here is the current and new version of YouTube, coming to a screen near you.

The Current version of YouTube

Here is the Cosmic Panda version of YouTube

So what do you prefer the old YouTube or the New YouTube?