Google News just launched a new desktop version of Google News.
The new Google News desktop UI, rolling out today, is expected to be available worldwide in the coming days, according to a post from Anand Paka, the Google News Product Manager
Overall, the new Google News has a rather blocky and spartan appearance.
Links to news sections still appear on the left. Trending stories have been moved to the right side. Across the top are links to the “Headlines”, “Local” and “For You” sections.
One of the biggest improvements to Google News are the new customization settings.
If you are logged into your Google account, the settings can be accessed by clicking on the gear icon on the upper right hand side. Settings that can be customized include:
• General Settings – you can set articles to open in a new window, have the Google News homepage refresh automatically, and choose what sports scores to include on the Google News homepage.
• Sections – you can add or remove custom sections with your own search terms. Any of the default news sections, except for ‘Top Stories’, can be removed.
• Local Sections – location based news sections can be added or removed.
• Your Interests – topics can be added with either a thumbs up or thumbs down to indicate your interest in seeing news about a specific topic. These settings affect the ‘Suggested For You’ section.
• Sources – you can set what news publications you prefer or totally block a publication from appearing on your custom version of Google News.
The ability to totally block a specific news source is a big change in Google News. In the past, a user could lower the prevalence of a specific publication though use of a slider… but in practice it appeared to have little, if any, affect on the results.
Now, if you don’t like CNN, Fox News, or the Washington Post, you can block them through the Google News source setting and as long as you are signed into your Google account, they won’t appear on your customized Google News.
A blocked source will also not appear in the search results when you make a search from Google News, and the block extends to your Google News mobile app.
Blocking sources in Google News does not change the results of regular Google web searches nor the News tab on Google itself.
The often overlooked “Suggested For You” section will likely get much more attention from users now that it has a prominent link at the top of the Google News homepage. The settings for it are a bit handicapped by the inability to easily delete an interest once it’s entered. You can give each listed interest a “thumbs up” or “thumbs down”. But the only way to make an interest neutral again is to delete all your interests and start over from scratch.
Have you tried the new Google News desktop UI yet?
If so, tell us what you think about it in our comments section.
Be sure to share this post with your friends, family and followers! Anyone that uses Google News will appreciate the heads up and information on the new settings!