Google News launches new desktop design with topic customization – TechCrunch

Google News refreshes its desktop site with a new design that lets you follow global and local news on one screen. The redesign puts Your Briefing, Local News, and Top Picks on a single page in different columns so it’s easier to keep up to date with news on the topics and regions that matter to you.

Until now, if you logged into Google News, you’d see the headlines section first, along with the weather widget to the side. Other sections such as World, For You, and Local news were accessible by scrolling down or clicking on those topics in the sidebar.

What Google News looks like in its old avatar

The redesign moves all of the sidebar topics to the top of the screen, to better accommodate other columns such as local news and top picks. The weather widget now occupies a small space at the top right of the screen. Google tried to replicate the feel of reading a newspaper or magazine, but through a desktop website.

“This change is just the latest way we’re bringing local news to users around the world. Last year, we extended a feature of Google Search so that readers around the world can now see a carousel of local news when Google finds local news coverage relevant to their query. This helps them easily find stories from local news publishers,” the company said in a statement.

The new look of Google News

Additionally, you can click the customize button next to the Your Topics section to select which topics you want to see on the homepage, and even mix and match their order of appearance.

Picture credits: Google

The Google News redesign also includes a revamped fact check section, which now also shows you the original claim and verified rating for more context. Earlier this year, Google rolled out a new “highly cited” tag in search to highlight the original source of a story.

The revamped Fact Check section, which provides more context

The company noted that with these changes, Google News returns to Spain after eight years, thanks to the new copyright law. The firm says that Google News is already present in 125 countries and 40 languages, and generates 24 billion clicks on publisher websites each month.

Google said it was opening applications for its News Equity Fund, a grant for freelance journalists or small news organizations to produce original stories. The company will accept applications until July 21 from almost every country in the world except China and Russia.

Yesterday, Google quietly dropped its appeal against a 500 million euro fine for an antitrust license in France. This came after French authorities accepted the company’s behavioral commitments offered in December. In a blog post, Google noted that it has entered into content agreements with more than 150 publications in the country.

Jessica C. Bell