Search giant says the new design will soon be seen across all its products just a month after a major restructuring of the company gave rise to Alphabet
The history of Google’s logo.
First they changed their name, now they’ve changed their logo. Google introduced a new sans-serif and slightly toned-down four-colour logo on Tuesday in the biggest redesign since 1999.
Google said the new design would soon be seen across all its products. Google’s homepage introduced the redesign with an animation that wiped away the old logo and drew the new one.
“Google has changed a lot over the past 17 years – from the range of our products to the evolution of their look and feel. And today we’re changing things up once again,” the company said in a blogpost.
The company said the redesign was meant to reflect the way that people interact with Google products across many different platforms, apps and devices.
“It doesn’t simply tell you that you’re using Google, but also shows you how Google is working for you. For example, new elements like a colorful Google mic help you identify and interact with Google whether you’re talking, tapping or typing. Meanwhile, we’re bidding adieu to the little blue ‘g’ icon and replacing it with a four-color ‘G’ that matches the logo.”
The logo has undergone many, mainly small, changes in its history. The colours have changed, 3D letters have been flattened, and an exclamation point came and went in 1999.
The move comes just a month after a major restructuring of the company was unveiled. Google is now owned by Alphabet, a holding company created by founders Sergey Brin and Larry Page to separate their money-making search engine company from the loss-making, “moon shot” projects like robot cars, medical research and internet-delivering balloons.
Just a month after announcing they had a new parent company, Google has unveiled a new, more playful logo. Since July, Google has been undergoing major restructuring, but none of those moves will be as talked about as this new logo. Not that it’s earth-shatteringly different, but it’s a new image to be ingrained on our Internet brains.
Here’s what you need to know:
1. The New Logo Is Similar to That of Google’s New Parent Company
The new logo is done in a sans-serif typeface and is not too dissimilar to the logo for Google’s new parent company, Alphabet. Larry Page, the company’s CEO, wrote in a blog post on August 10 that “Google is not a conventional company. We do not intend to become one.” So the new fun logo seems to demonstrate that. In a blog post released on September 1, the company said “Google has changed a lot over the past 17 years – from the range of our products to the evolution of their look and feel. And today we’re changing things up once again.” The post adds that, eventually, the logo will come across all of Google’s pages and products.
A multicolored “G” will be the company’s smaller icon, replacing the blue “g.”
2. The Original Designer Said She Wanted the Logo Look ‘Almost Non-Designed’
In the video to celebrate the release of the new logo, Google notes that since their first logo back in 1998, it has constantly been evolving. The original logo was designed by Ruth Kedar. She explained her creative thought process:
It was playful and deceptively simple. The design subtle as to look almost non-designed, the reading effortless. The colors evoke memories of child play, but deftly stray from the color wheel strictures so as to hint to the inherent element of serendipity creeping into any search results page and the irreverence and boldness of the “I am feeling lucky” link. The texture and shading of each letter is done in an unobtrusive way resulting in lifting it from the page while giving it both weight and lightness. It is solid but there is also an ethereal quality to it.
She later spoke about her color choices: “We ended up with the primary colors, but instead of having the pattern go in order, we put a secondary color on the L, which brought back the idea that Google doesn’t follow the rules.” The evolution of Google’s design is discussed at length in a new site created by the company.
3. The New Logo Is Celebrated in Today’s Google Doodle
The reach of Google’s latest doodle.
Of course the company is using its Google Doodle platform to help spread the word about the new logo. The doodle is present in most countries in the world. A nice animation first shows the old logo, and then a hand appears and wipes it out, making way for the new one. The very first doodle in 1998 came about when Google’s staff went to party at Burning Man and left the doodle as an elaborate out-of-office message.
4. The 2015 Design Marks the Biggest Departure in Logo Continuity Since Google Dropped the Exclamation Point
The last logo had been in effect since September 2013, which showed the logo in a more two dimensional or flat way. It underwent a very slight change in pixelation in May 2014. Creative Bloq noted that the change was “all but invisible to everyone but typesetting enthusiasts.” It could be argued that the September 2015 new logo represents the biggest departure for Google since 1999 when the exclamation point at the end of the logo disappeared.
A Brief History of the Google Logo:
1997: Google’s pre-launch logo.
1998: Larry Page and Sergey Brin use this logo for their Stanford University graduate project.
August 30, 1998: The team heads to Burning Man and creates the first Doodle as an out-of-office message.
September 1998: Google moves to google.com and shares its beta release with the world.
May 1999: Still playful, the logo gets a more sophisticated look based on the Catull typeface.
May 2010: The logo brightens up and sports a reduced drop shadow.
September 2013: The logo goes flat with some typographical tweaks.
5. Google’s Very First Logo Was Kind of Creepy
Back in 1996, when Google was known as BackRub, it had a more sensual, less cartoony logo showing a hand stroking a bare back. The odd name stems from the search engine’s use of backlinks to rank the importance of a website, a pioneering innovation.
It was a year later when Larry Page and Sergey Brin rolled out the first Google logo.