What's With All the Tech Company Logo Changes?
Have you noticed that some of the more notable tech companies are tweaking their logos?
The recent logo craze started with Yahoo (NASDAQ: YHOO). CEO Marissa Mayer and crew locked themselves away for a weekend and designed a new logo (known as a mark in the graphic design field) which failed to impress the masses if you do a quick Twitter search.
As Mayer explained in her Tumblr post, the logo hasn’t changed since 1995. That was the year O.J. Simpson was found innocent in his (first) court case so yes, times have changed a little. Apparently, there are no straight lines in the new mark but you’re going to have to look pretty closely to notice. That was big logo change #1.
Soon after, presumably because media outlets were on a logo-watch craze, it was reported that Google (NASDAQ: GOOG) changed its logo. Seeming to follow Apple's (NASDAQ: AAPL) design choices, the logo (sorry, “mark”) is now flat. (See it here) Gone are those shadows and 3-D-ish features that we’ve all noticed without really noticing. The colors are also more muted in the new design.
But Google insists that this isn’t a logo change. It’s using it when the older, beveled look doesn’t display well--printed banners, for example.
Tuesday, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) unveiled a new and improved logo for its search engine, Bing. Remember the old blue logo with the yellow-orange dot? That’s gone in favor of this mark which, at least judging by early comments, is a hit.
The new one uses orange from one of the quadrant’s of Microsoft’s flag logo. Along with the logo came a complete redesign of the search engine.
The truth is that logo redesigns happen regularly. As Mayer correctly pointed out, companies tweak their logos all of the time but the changes are so small that the mainstream public doesn’t notice.
But for older tech companies, the evolution of their logos are striking. You know when you watch older movies and think, “how did they ever allow themselves to be on camera looking like that?
You might feel the same way if you look at Apple’s string of logos. Take a look at the company’s first logo that featured Isaac Newton sitting under an “Apple” tree. Or IBM's (NYSE: IBM) sphere logo? Even Facebook (NASDAQ: FB) didn’t quite have the eye-catching mark it does now.
Looking at how logos have changed over time, let’s not be so quick to criticize Yahoo!. We can all be glad that Apple didn’t remain true to its logo roots!
Disclosure: At the time of this writing, Tim Parker was long Apple.
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