YouTube gets sleek new design with cross-site Guide feature to promote subscriptions and channels!!

YouTube has released new features designed to help make it easier for viewers to subscribe and watch channels on its site. Part of this effort is the expansion of its Guide feature, which now reaches across multiple devices. Additionally, the service is rolling out a new look to the site that it says is cleaner and simpler.

With channel subscriptions, YouTube has been focused on helping users to discover new videos. Although rolled out five years ago, it was last year when the company made it easier for people to subscribe by adding the Guide on the homepage.

As you may have seen, when you add subscriptions to your Guide, it shows you videos related to what you’ve seen before. Now, the Guide follows you across all of your devices, including Android, iPhone, iPad, Playstation 3, Google TV, and more — never again will you need to remember what channel had your favorite video.

guide 1 YouTube gets sleek new design with cross site Guide feature to promote subscriptions and channels

There are over 4 billion hours of video watched on YouTube alone each month. Within the last year, the number of users subscribing to channels has doubled, and the company is estimating that an additional 30% rise is to be expected. In other words, managing subscriptions is definitely important.

With over 800 million people visiting the site each month, discovering videos isn’t enough — YouTube is also rolling out a new layout where its “crucial elements” are up front and center: the video is at the top of the page with the subscribe button, social actions, and video info are below it. This places the emphasis on the video content, and nothing else. Your playlists are also available on the right-hand side so you can navigate through other videos as well.

newlook 1 YouTube gets sleek new design with cross site Guide feature to promote subscriptions and channels

It appears that YouTube had been making some design changes to the service for a while now. As TechCrunch reported, a YouTube spokesperson stated that “with more videos coming to YouTube every minute, we’re always experimenting with ways to help people more easily find, watch and share the videos that matter most to them. As always, we’ll consider rolling changes out more broadly based on feedback on these experiments.”

For those participating in the YouTube Creators program, a resource to help users create better content by taking advantage of the service’s tools, there are at least three things to note about what the new design means: the Guide is everywhere and will promote channel activity to fans, the video now becomes center stage on the viewing page, and lastly, it’s now easier for fans to subscribe along with what it calls “enhanced channel recommendations”.

Photo credit: ERIC PIERMONT/AFP/Getty Images

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TRAI releases consultation paper on deactivation of SIM Cards due to non-usage!!

The Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) has taken up the issue of the telecom operators ‘arbitrarily’ disconnecting services of subscribers owing to ‘non-usage of numbers’ or ‘inactive SIM connections’ and has released a consultation paper on the issue.

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India

Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

According to the TRAI, around 20 crore SIM cards have been inactive for a particular period of time, while total balance due on that account is about Rs. 128.9 crore. The regulator noted that subscribers have to taken to various platforms/forums to complain that their mobile connections were being disconnected arbitrarily by telecom operators.

Mobile number series allocated to the wireless access service providers for provisioning of mobile numbers are becoming increasingly scarce because of a significant growth in the number of wireless connections coupled with the presence of a large number of competitive wireless access service providers. It has been observed that a significant number of wireless connections are not used for long periods of time. This results in avoidable blocking of scarce numbering resources,” says the telecom regulator in a release.

“With an aim to manage their numbering resources better, the service providers have proposed to follow a procedure for deactivating mobile connections which are not used for a long time. However, while carrying out such deactivations, the customers should be informed transparently and those customers who wish to retain their connections even while not using them should have the option to do so on payment of a connection retention fee. TRAI has, therefore, decided to undertake a consultation process on various issues related to deactivation of SIMs due to non-usage with a view to protect the interests of consumers while seeking to ensure better utilization of scarce numbering resources,” it further adds.

The TRAI has invited written comments on the issues raised in the Consultation Paper from the stakeholders by 21.12.2012. Counter-comments, if any, may be sent by 28.12.2012.