Last month, the search giant announced that it was creating a parent company called Alphabet. This news was followed by Google unveiling a new logo, which parts with the iconic typeface it has used since 1999.
According to Brian Hoff, a typographer at Brian Hoff Design, the old serif logo was too serious. He suggested that the old logo didn’t “feel like it was intended to flow from one letter to the other.”
Its latest change involved modernising the logo, and shifting colours to a softer hue.
“This feels more modern,” Hoff said. “It’s simplified. The letters have this flow to them, a rhythm and a balance.”
As Google put it in a recent statement: “It doesn’t simply tell you that you’re using Google, but also shows you how Google is working for you.”
This feels like the evolution of Google as a company, Hoff said. “The company has introduced the logo as not just a logo, but a language, a way of understanding Google through design and interaction.”
This was echoed by Slate Magazine’s web designer Derreck Johnson, who said: “It’s amazing what clipping off a few serifs can do.”
He suggested that Google had rolled out of bed and stepped out the door with a fresh new look and a new attitude. Gone are the logo’s familiar sharp turns, hard edges, and slightly medieval look.
Google has chosen to go with a strong-yet-sleek look that will look equally as pretty on small, handheld devices as it will on large-scale displays, he explained. From a design aspect, “that’s where the sauce lies: legibility and adaptability”. The “less is more” mantra is on full blast here.
“I see six letters that represent a youthful, dynamic creativity – a notion that this company was built on,” he said. “Without that playful spirit, Google isn’t really Google. But of course, we’re talking about a massive media conglomerate here, so they couldn’t get too crazy. How does Google show us that it isn’t that stiff? A slightly tilted E. “
Once upon a time, Google was one destination that you reached from one device: a desktop PC, the company said.
It explained that these days, people interact with Google products across many different platforms, apps and devices. “You expect Google to help you whenever and wherever you need it, whether it’s on your mobile phone, TV, watch, the dashboard in your car, and yes, even a desktop,” it said. “This is why we’re introducing a new logo and identity family that reflects this reality and shows you when the Google magic is working for you, even on the tiniest screens.”
Companies change typeface to keep them up to date, or because an old logo no longer fits with a new business strategy, said graphic designer David Airey.
“Google is one of the world’s most innovative companies, so the previous serif wordmark was never really the right fit, particularly considering the young age of the business. Serif typefaces are generally more suited to traditional companies with a lot of history and heritage. It makes sense for Google to be identified by a more contemporary mark.”
However, some have suggested the new redesign is a step down for the company.
I hate the new Google logo. Looks like the font for a title of a children’s book.
— Harmony Walton (@harmonyzw) September 1, 2015
Why does everything now have to be infantilised, with rounded edges and a faux-quirky slant? What’s wrong with grown-up serifs? #GoogleLogo
— James Brownsell (@JamesBrownsell) September 2, 2015
Share this story