The new friending notification also includes the person's avatar. Considering the volume of friend requests many people receive, and the thinner one's relationship need be to get connected on Facebook now, the update is helpful - especially for high school friends or those who have changed their maiden names upon getting married.
The New Facebook E-mail Notifications Are In Full Color
Historically, Facebook Updates Have Been Less Impressive
Net net, the notifications get away from the boring single blue link of confirmation, and offer just a little bit more of a hint as to who the friend is. I would expect that as things develop, Facebook would mimic Twitter again, showing the number of total friend connections, and quite possibly, how many mutual friends you have. It's something that since-acquired FriendFeed has been doing, and the team there just might tell their new overlords how it's done.