I've got to say, I very much dislike the new layout. iPhone users warned us and you, but now you're forcing the bad new design also upon us android users…
What annoys me very much, is how extremely excessive image-centric the new layout is, especially in the stream overview. It distracts the eye and it thus takes longer to see information (especially, if the image is white - white text on white background - what have you been smoking?). Additionally, every one post seems to be way to big.
Also in a post, text seems *WAY* too big.
About improvements: Where? Hangouts? I couldn't care less. What else?
Overall: Yes, it *looks* nicer. But is a lot less functional - because it looks nicer… Step in the wrong direction.