People love the new Pinterest profile pages but will continually rip apart Facebook’s design and functionality updates.
Part of being a new emerging platform is simplicity. Sign up to profile creation to execution and sharing is intuitive. So the goal when scaling so fast is to maintain that minimalist design without getting pushback from your original members.
Instagram and the Day One app for iPhone are my favorite examples of platforms that get better with each update. They clean the app up, add a few more bells and whistles, and strip away the unnecessary features. It feels like they’ve had months and months of user feedback to make it the best experience possible.
Part of starting out on the mobile platform is that space is limited. If Facebook were new today, it would need to compete with equally well designed mobile social apps like Path. Instead, Facebook has to monetize its 1 billion users with targeted ads on the desktop. Facebook’s main challenge is providing ad space on the mobile without interrupting the user experience on such a small screen.
Inevitably, mainstream platforms get criticized as they grow in users and make updates. Nobody wants to relearn how to use the product. Pinterest may be hot and user friendly now. Just wait until the platform has to design for making money.