I haven’t tried the beta app, but from what I have seen online, there are several UX issues. You already mention you spend more taps to get to where you want to go. It already took a lot of clicks to get home etc. in the original app.
When it comes to contrast and the Universal Design rules stated in WCAG f.ex. , the custom headers make it possible to end up with unreadable menu items.
The choice to go with so much text on the previews of the articles has had a very bad side effect for me so far.
- There is so much text that I find it exhausting to browse when I’m in a writer page.
- I don’t click articles anymore. Writers get less read time, because too much of the article is in the preview.