Google News is one of the largest news aggregation services out there, providing a bird’s eye view of news since 2002. Twenty years after its initial release as a beta on the web and countless redesigns along the way, Google thought it was time to brush up on the service again. A new Google News website is now available and it seems much more in line with the mobile app on Android and iOS.
As Google points out in its blog post, the Google News redesign should be based on user feedback and putting new sections first. In particular, the new website puts personalized top stories, local news, and picks center stage for you, omitting the less personalized “headlines” of the old design altogether. The new design also emphasizes a lot more individual stories than the older one, giving you access to fewer alternative stories at a glance. You can still access more articles about a particular story through the Full coverage shortcut though. This makes for a less cluttered interface, but still gives you a less differentiated view of the news.
On a more positive note, the redesign offers a much more compact image, requiring less scrolling. The local news section in the top right corner also has a new trick up its sleeve. You can add multiple places to read local news about, complete with an easy option to switch between them. There are also more powerful customization options for those signed in with their Google account. A Your topics section further down can be customized with your preferred topics in custom order.
Fact checks have also been given a makeover so you can see verified claims and conclusion. It’s just a shame that the section has moved further down, making it just a little less visible. Obviously, the new Google News for the web is modeled after the Android and iOS apps, which have offered similar layouts and features for a long time.
In addition, Google News is finally returning to Spain after an eight-year hiatus. The company exited the market due to disputes with publishers over text fragments. It explains that a new copyright law has been passed in the country, “allowing Spanish media outlets – big and small – to make their own decisions about how their content can be discovered and how they want to monetize that content.” Google cites research that claims news consumption plummeted when it was forced to leave Spain in 2014, with up to 10% less traffic to sites.
Google writes that its News service is available in more than 125 countries and 40 languages around the world. Every month, people visit more than 24 billion individual News and Search articles. To sort through the vast amount of stories out there, Google uses machine learning algorithms to show its readers the most relevant stories for their interests, language, and location.
Toggle the new look of Google News on the web
Enabling the new look and feel of Google News is as easy as it can be. Go to news.google.com as you normally do and look for the blue banner at the top, introducing the new Google News. To go to the new look, click on the Try it clutch.
If you are not happy with what you see, it is also possible to revert to the old design, at least for the time being. To do this, look for the settings gear in the top right corner of the new design and click on it. In the pop-up menu that appears next, click Settings† At the bottom is a Get started with the new Google News checkbox. Uncheck the box to revert to the old design.
No matter what design you like, there are tons of tricks and tips to get the most out of Google News.