In case you thought YouTube Channels 1.0 were shite, they've now given us version 2.0 (beta). But really, what's in a name and version number?
Ok so YouTube is getting ready to release a new version of YouTube channels and they're quite pleased with themselves overall. Thousands are already using the new Channels 2.0 but they're continuing to add on to them and this week they've added a whole new slew of things including… channel ADS. If you are a Youtube Partner, you will be able to pile on a 'full range of ads' on your YouTube Channel. It's about time!
Aside from the new design refresh which includes several default design themes and the ability to customize your own theme (within the framework established), further enhancements include sort controls (most viewed, chronological, rating), clickable rating stars, video count per section and more.
They're planning on doing more to the new Channels before giving them a proper full release which is expected to launch on July 15th. Things they're looking at include the ability to reorder lists and playlists, autolinking URLs, upload date in description and continuing to hunt down and squash some bugs.
They have had several issues including a problem where thumbnails were misaligned and funky, but apparently, that's been fixed as well. In order to make sure they create the best product they can they have been asking that if you're interested to begin using the beta Channels 2.0 and offering up feedback so they know what they should fix and focus on for the future release.
To upgrade your channel, you can login to your account and click the "Edit Channel" link. You will then be prompted with the following message where you can then "upgrade your channel":
Try our new BETA channels!
You may have seen them already, and now you can try it out for yourself. With our new design, you can watch a channel's videos, browse its playlists, and even edit your own channel, without leaving the page. We'll save a copy of your current "old" channel design, and you can switch back to it by clicking "opt-out" at any time. See our blog for more information and updates on our BETA's progress.
More than anything, I think it helps create a better channel experience for visitors in that they will be able to view all your content without being pulled off the channel page. Additionally, you will be able to customize the design of the channel and the videos that appear on the channel without leaving the channel, thanks to the added ajax functionality.
Here is a video that they released to announce the new channels Beta back on the 24th.
I found it a bit funny that it has a rating of 1&1/2 starts. I suppose the community either thought the video sucked, or the new features do. Judging by the comments (which I wont re-post, but recommend reading), people dont seem to be too happy about the new changes. Apparently, users will be "forced" to adopt the new channel layout upon the public launch on July 15th and that seems to be what is causing all the negative feedback.
To give you an idea of the extent to which this is upsetting some users, check out some of the videos from users that have been flooding YouTube over the past few weeks.
Like this ridiculous dramatic video.
Overall, I like the new layout and am thankful that the folks at YouTube are continuously upgrading and changing things up. Come on folks, Yes, change is hard. But change is a good thing ;-)
What do you think?