A Facebook Redesign Likely Being Unveiled Tomorrow After An Employee "Lockdown"

As you’re probably aware by now, Facebook is holding an event at their headquarters in Palo Alto, CA. The invite we received didn’t seem to give any real clues about what would be announced, but that didn’t stop everyone from guessing anyway. But now we know a part of what they’re rolling out — because they’ve actually already sort of started rolling it out. At least a part of what will be unveiled tomorrow is a redesign, we hear.

Update: The Facebook event is currently going on right now. It seems Facebook may not roll out the new design today. It is definitely a part of the “Lockdown” (see below) which Zuckerberg talked about today, but it may not come for a few weeks. More to come…

Yes, just like Twitter did a few weeks ago, Facebook will be giving their service a new coat of paint tomorrow. Some users are already reporting that they’re seeing a new version of chat appear on the site — that’s because it’s a part of this redesign, we’ve confirmed with a source. More specifically, chat will be moved to the left side of the screen and big profile pictures are being added into the chat itself. But the real key of the redesign is that all Profile pages and much of the rest of the site will be revamped to look more like Places pages, we’re told. If you look at the image below of our TechCrunch Disrupt Places page, you’ll get a taste of what’s to come.

Aside from the movement of chat, apps will be moved below profile pictures as icons. The profile navigation will also now reside in that area, we believe. That means the top tabs you see now on Profile pages will likely be no more. There will also likely be a lot of subtle tweaks to the UI in order to unify the entire service. All the major Facebook areas should be getting this new coat of paint, we hear. That means Profiles, Pages, Events, Groups, Photos, and Videos.

From what we’re told, Facebook has been in a state of lockdown for the past two months or so working on this new design. This lockdown is actually called “Lockdown” — there’s even a Facebook Group for it. Apparently, it’s something that CEO Mark Zuckerberg uses to get the troops worked up and ready to work basically 24/7. “Whatever it takes,” we’re told. If you believe the Wall postings there, the last Lockdown was four years ago before this current one.

VentureBeat’s Anthony Ha previously reported on this Lockdown two months ago when the company apparently went into it. Tomorrow morning, they could be emerging.

Facebook has not yet responded to our request for comment. I suspect they might tomorrow.