September 6, 2015
This week Google, now a part of new holding company Alphabet, launched its updated logo design. The old logo design, created in 1999, was a serif typeface. The new logo is a colorful sans serif typeface that goes by the name Product Sans.
The other change, as you have probably already noticed, is that the new logo has been accessorized with animated red, orange, blue and green dots. The dots undulate like water, mimic sound equalizer wave forms, and will undoubtedly react in all sorts of ways over time, as new applications for mobile and other devices yet to appear arise.
The biggest announcement from Google is change.
Much has happened since the search engine appeared sixteen years ago. Since then, they have found themselves immersed in car design, eyewear devices, global mapping, net neutrality, advertising sales, and the owners of broadband companies like YouTube.
Corporate sprawl makes people (and investors) nervous. The new Alphabet will narrow Google’s scope to Google, Nest Labs, and Calico, as well as other businesses including Google X, Google Capital, and Google Ventures.
And this is why Google needed a new Brand logo.
Not because people were tired of the old one. But because logos are icons–and icons signal who we are as a brand community. Our receptors instantly process who the “Brand” is, what it means and whether we should approach or avoid: imagine other icons like the McDonald’s golden arches, the Nike swoosh, or the ISIS black flag and you understand the instantaneous impact these imprints have on our understanding and imagination.