A screen grab of the new version of Twitter.

Twitter unveils radical new 'media-rich' redesign

The microblogging platform announces its first major redesign in a move designed to help compete for advertising.

TWITTER has unveiled a radical new resign which will feature a far more ‘media rich’ interface which it hopes will help the site compete for the online advertising market.

On foot of an earlier announcement by a company VP that Twitter was “not a social network,” but was “for news“, the company’s CEO Evan Williams unveiled a new redesign which splits the main page into two vertical panes, with the right-hand panel devoted to multimedia content like videos and photographs being posted by users.

The idea is that the newly-remodelled site will stop users having to open new windows or tabs in their browsers to view such content, helping to make the usage process more fluent.

Williams explained to the BBC that users “can now take a simple short tweet and get more context and information in less time.”

As part of the redesign, the company has struck deals with over a dozen other major sites, including YouTube and Flickr, allowing their content to be embedded in the right-hand pane when a user post a link to their content.

The move is likely to reduce the usage of applications accessing Twitter through its application programming interface (API), with many of the features popular in these apps being embedded into the web-based interface.

The redesign will also help the site to embed more targeted advertising into its main page, with ads potentially generated based on the live content of a user’s timeline.

The new design has been rolled out immediately to a selected number of accounts, with the remainder of the site’s users – now numbering well over 100 million, with 370,000 new ones joining every day – being given the new design over the coming weeks.