Google unveiled its new shiny logo on Tuesday, just a month after announcing a business restructuring that led to the formation of a new parent company, Alphabet, to operate as a collection of companies, including the core Google search and advertising business, Android, YouTube, and Maps.
The new logo maintains a colourful typographic featuring six simple letters set on a white background, though the word “Google” is now written in a new flat font – Product Sans. They also replaced the lowercase blue “g” icon – that shows the website on browser tabs – with a four-colour uppercase “G” to match the new logo.
Actually, the logo has three distinct elements:
- the logo comprising GOOGLE letters;
- the set of dots that relate to the logo’s curvature and colours;
- and the monogram “G”.
The fact that any of the elements can be used makes the possibilities endless.
According to design experts, Google’s logo can be viewed as a system, where the elements of the logo – round geometry and colour – are applies to multiple aspects of the identity, so it is completely integral, whatever way you use Google.
What inspired the change?
The change is somewhat strategic, as industry-wide tech giants shift their focus from desktop to mobile and beyond. While the previous logo may have worked with big computer screens, it did not always pop in mobile devices.
So, the new “G” will serve as the conduit via which any user accessing Google on any device besides a PC will be able to see the logo. So, the new logo:
- has simple lettering so it can scale better to smaller sizes
- is more distinct and legible (the watermark)
- can display on even low-bandwidth connections (measures 305 bytes compared to the previous 14,000 bytes logo)
Generally, the logo should give a better reflection of Google’s current position – no longer a website that you only visit on PC, but also a collection of apps, sites, and services that you visit on desktops, Chromebooks, tablets, smartphones, and any other place you can get a web browser.
The ultimate effect is one of friendliness and approachability. The previous logo could not be incorporated into all the different interfaces Google are going for, including any the public is not yet aware of. As far as Google is concerned, the future holds numerous exciting possibilities. So the applications for the logo are endless.
The logo has to be as versatile, clear, recognisable, and pleasant to the eye on an app display as it is on a website.
The manner it was unveiled
Design experts believe that the sudden introduction of a new logo – without any drama – was a strategy for Google to appear less of a corporate brand, and create a more transparent, friendly identity that can be spread across its different mediums. However, some critics argue that the logo has now become “too serious”, and does not achieve its intended purpose – it is plain, not artistic, and looks like a logo for any other corporate, yet it does not look like it belongs to Google.
First time Google has changed its look?
Google has changed its look multiple times since the company was founded in 1998, and this is probably not its last update. The tech company has tweaked its official logo around six times before, though this could easily be its biggest update since Google first modified the lettering and settled for its four colours in 1999.
That said, this is a rather significant update by Google that reflects all of the different ways that Google serves its customers across Gmail, Search, Chrome, Maps, and many more. So any user can now see the “Google magic” working for them regardless of the screen size.