Facebook unveils biggest shift to home screen since its launch

FACEBOOK last night unveiled the most radical change to its home screen in years in a bid to retain the attention of users and attract more advertisers.

The company’s founder Mark Zuckerberg unveiled the first significant changes to the News Feed – Facebook users’ landing page – since it was launched in 2006.

The revamped feature offers Facebook users a choice of different feeds rather than just one, with different feeds for updates from close friends, discussions about certain topics such as films or music, and information from news organisations.

"We want updates from our friends but we also want updates from publications, businesses and world leaders. It’s a design which reflects the evolving face of [Facebook]" Zuckerberg said.

News Feed will also be far more focused on pictures, reflecting the increased popularity of sharing photos on Facebook.

The new features will be intended to encourage users to visit more than one page – rather than just a single home screen – and are likely to make photo-based adverts more prominent.

Zuckerberg will hope this will improve advertising sales – Facebook’s primary source of revenues – especially on mobile phones. Since the company’s initial public offering last May, Zuckerberg has faced questions over Facebook’s ability to take advantage of the increasing number of people using the social network on smartphones.

The revamped News Feed will be gradually rolled out to Facebook users over the next few weeks.