Google Tests Black Interface Elements

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As part of the search giant’s ongoing efforts to refine its look, feel, and functionality, Google is testing a lineup of new looks that focus in on the world’s most popular color: Black. Are they going to it because it’s slimming? Power-saving? Or are they just goofing around with colors? The exact motives aren’t clear, but enough users are seeing the black navigation bar that some users are complaining about how the black looks with their custom page design.

The navigation bar – that thin strip of links at the top of any page that is tied to a Google account (Gmail, Google Search, Google Account settings, etc.) – certainly seems to be the focus of the current testing. The new version is a simple black background with grey links and a red highlight bar on top, indicating what page you’re currently on. (The current highlight bar is blue.)

Additionally, Google is testing out a new version of the YouTube player that is – you guessed it – black. In addition to changing the entire player to a black, grey, and red theme, the new version of the YouTube player gives a bigger pause button. This is one of several new YouTube player designs being tested, with at least one other option – one that’s grey and red – having been confirmed as a potential candidate.

[Sources include: Google Operating System]


Rob D Young
Rob has been insatiably obsessed with Google, search engine technology, and the trends of the web-based world since he began life as a webmaster in... Read Full Bio
Rob D Young

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  • Anonymous

    I really like the new look – I also like the updated search results with the URLs just below the title text. Looks good.

  • Gwen Reed

    The grey on black navigation bar is illegible to the visually impaired due to very low contrast and fails W3S standards for accessibility.

  • Google User

    I don’t like it. I want a simple option to get rid of it. Get to work on that code Google programmers it ought to only take you 5 minutes. I and thousands of other Google users  be waiting for that improvement. If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. Is isn’t broke. Keep your hands off the code.