We wanted it, we got it. The new, and completely revamped Flickr is here.
It kind of happened without a warning. I was browsing my photo stream – pondering the future of Tumblr – when Yahoo! served me yet another surprise. This page:
The new site’s main features are available here, but the most important ones are:
- one terabyte of storage for free, apparently for everyone; it’s a bit confusing though: have free and Pro accounts been merged into one? 1Tb blows Google’s recent upgrade to 15 Gb for joint storage out of the water, but Flickr needs to be clearer on the pricing/storage options, particularly if they want to charge people $499/year to double the storage [UPDATE: there are three types of accounts, although Flickr doesn't make it very clear: ad-supported free a/c, ad-free a/c @ $49.99/year and the 'doublr' one - with 2Tb of storage - @ $499.99/year; this article explains how the fee compares to Google and others],
- ability to share images in original quality,
- mobile integration (yeah, it would be silly not to),
- full-screen experience and a brand new layout, not dissimilar to that of 500px.com,
- you get a ‘cover photo’ (yes, I *know*), which, sadly, you can’t really edit – I can’t drag it into position,
- your contacts’ images are now more prominent, which in theory should make it easier to interact with them. The flow page however doesn’t make it easy at al to find your own images and see recent activity on them. This option is still available, but from the drop-down menu, which is not great. Also, your contacts’ square images look weird in the flow.
- individual images are now by default displayed on black background (no more ‘please view on black!’ for some) and take central place, with the rest of the info hidden below the fold. Smart. But also a bit weird, at least initially,
- images can still be geotagged, but the map itself has now been hidden.
As a result, your photostream now looks like this:
Much easier to navigate through the stream and the lack of pagination makes it easier to browse through your entire image stream, giving some old images a new lease of life. Really cool. Feel free to disagree.
It’s definitely a completely different experience. Full of bugs and some annoying quirks. But also some long-awaited improvements, although I haven’t seen that many new features. It will take a while to absorb the changes and get used to the new way of exploring everything on the site.
So, it’s biggr, spectaculr and wherevr. This is the only bit that makes it feel like it’s still 2006.
The rest feels like it’s almost 2013. At last.