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Is web design getting flatter?

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Rose Mountague

Head of Design

In the last couple of months, when scouring websites for design inspiration, I've noticed a distinct shift in style over the last few years. Design trends often go in and out, however more and more websites are increasing introducing 'flatter' styles.

Gone are the days of the in famous rounded corners, bevels and garish gradients, out with the old and in with the new. 

Stylish websites these days are more simple and subtle. Using softer gradients and subtle rounded corners, full colour flatter graphics and high quality photography.

'Flatter' designed websites focus a lot on solid colours, typography and simpler use of UI elements. 'Flatter' isn't boring, its effective, simple, subtle and stylish.

Even bigger corporations are adopting this shift in style. A few examples of how big brands have incorporated this 'flatter' design approach include:

Microsoft Windows

This 'flat' design approach has transcended all its products, as well with the launch of the new Windows 8 operating system, using colourful flat squares and flatter vector based iconography.

BBC

The BBC went from a busy user interface to a much simpler, streamlined design. It now uses flat colour and simple layouts to create a more user friendly and cleaner yet visually interesting homepage.

ITV

ITV re-branded recently, exchanging their three dimensional logo for a flatter, colour led new style with accompanying 'flatter' web design.

USA Today

Wolff Ollins rebranded USA today in his signature style of 'flat' design which translates well across the launch of the new site. What do you think to this new trend in style?

Have you embraced it or are you looking forward to what might come next?