Evolution of Logos from Popular Websites

Evolution of Logos from Popular Websites

A company brand is always evolving and sometimes the logo tags along too. I’ve roped together a collection of some logos that have undergone rather neat tweaks and adjustments over the years.

Given that the internet world is still relatively new in that grand scheme of things, internet companies don’t quite have the number of revisions as more established industries (automotive, manufacturing, etc.) might have.

I’ve tried to be as thorough as possible, feel free to voice your thoughts in the comments. Additionally, for those of you craving more logo related goodness, feel free to check out our Fonts Used in Popular Websites article.












Posted Friday, August 14th, 2009 · Back to Top


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60 Comments 12 Mentions

  1. Stefan Author Editor

    I can’t look at Quicktimes new logo without thinking; what were they doing? Why didn’t anyone – someone, stop them during the process?
    .-= Stefan´s last blog ..Book Review: The Art of Persuasion =-.


  2. 2tone Author Editor

    I agree with you Stefan, it´s horrible.

    I personaly like the redesign of yahoo. And the new designs of sparknotes, aol and aim are good too.

    Not very keen on Ask.com, i think the second choice is better.
    .-= 2tone´s last blog ..swedish-organic-water =-.


  3. Michael Krapf Author Editor

    I like logo evolution posts almost as much as I like IPhone app posts. Really! Also, crazy that I can actually remember the early Google logo. Finally, I agree completely about the quicktime logo.

    .-= Michael Krapf´s last blog ..It’s All About the Apps! =-.


  4. Spencer Allan Brooks Author Editor

    This is one of my favorite posts! i think it’s so funny how hotmail changed so much. You never notice these things until they’re showcased like this.


  5. Christopher Hennis Author Editor

    Nice, original and entertaining post.
    .-= Christopher Hennis´s last blog ..38 Really Quality Websites to Find Free Photoshop Brushes =-.


  6. Joël Cox Author Editor

    Someone at SparkNotes finally saw they were heading in the wrong direction. The are are back on track now, but it lost its personality.

    On Quicktime: It will take some time to get used to and I guess it was made this way to flow in with the other elements in Snow Leopard. Like the iTunes logo turning blue instead of green.
    .-= Joël Cox´s last blog ..Review: De wet op internet =-.


  7. Callum Chapman Author Editor

    I think all the logos on the left side other than the quicktime logo were terrible!
    .-= Callum Chapman´s last blog ..How to Design an Abstract Business Card in Photoshop =-.


  8. Gareth Coxon – Dot Design Author Editor

    Interesting to see these evolutions side by side, SparkNotes is the most obvious improvement but judging by the first few designs it wasn’t hard! :-)
    .-= Gareth Coxon – Dot Design´s last blog ..Client Focus 1: Symmetry Business Marketing =-.


  9. Nicholas Z. Cardot Author Editor

    I like the yahoo! improvement but like some of you I don’t like quicktime’s logo either.
    .-= Nicholas Z. Cardot´s last blog ..21 Mind-Buzzing Photo Manipulations =-.


  10. Milko Melian Author Editor

    Interesting post, always like to see the before/after effects. Some are needed and others are just a lift. For Sparknotes, since first time hearing about it, I went to their website and notice it says beta. I hope they keep changing the logo. I love the Mickey Mouse transition in bebo’s logo, and Quicktime, the best one so far in this post.
    .-= Milko Melian´s last blog ..Catalyst Direct Mailers – 2 =-.


  11. Marco Author Editor

    Great post – really liked it! About QuickTime: I can’t find the new design on Apples website, are you sure it’s the correct one? I really liked the previous ones.

    Anyway, stumbled and keep up the great work!
    .-= Marco´s last blog ..The Polaroid Photo Viewer – Non-Full Screen =-.


  12. Kayla Author Editor

    Great post..its fun to look at these things. I guess Hotmail couldn’t make up their minds there for awhile :P
    .-= Kayla´s last blog ..The Art of User-Centric Web Design =-.


  13. Jacob Cass Author Editor

    Wow I never knew that there were so many logo variations from these websites, thanks for putting it together Sam.
    .-= Jacob Cass´s last blog ..The “Pros” and Cons of Spec Work =-.


  14. David Airey Author Editor

    I agree, Stefan, and would say the same about IGN. Granted, the original wasn’t any better.

    Cheers, Sam.
    .-= David Airey´s last blog ..AIGA President Debbie Millman on spec work =-.


  15. Ifad Ardin Author Editor

    Totally agree with Joel Cox about the Sparknotes. They are turning from red and yellow and end up with blue, definitely losing their personality.


  16. Zach Dunn Author Editor

    Great comments so far everyone. For those of you wondering about the Quicktime logo redesign, it’s the one expected with the launch of Snow Leopard.

    I think one of the most fascinating trends in these logos is the change in depth between revisions.

    Most of the older logos started as a two dimensional “flat” look, and then started adding lighting effects.

    Even more interesting is how sites like AIM went back to a flat look and removed any dimension after a while. Product of the Web 2.0 gloss fads wearing out?


  17. Brendan O’Neil Author Editor

    Love the evolution of logo idea, I saw this post a while back highlighting the changes between Coca-Cola and Pepsi (http://www.248am.com/mark/design/pepsi-vs-coca-cola-logo-evolution-chart/)
    .-= Brendan O’Neil´s last blog ..Red Door Interactive: Denver =-.


  18. Marco Moreira Author Editor

    I liked more: Yahoo!
    I didn´t like: Quicktime
    .-= Marco Moreira´s last blog ..No Anima Mundi todo mundo vira criança =-.


  19. BebopDesigner Author Editor

    Wow! great post. Love the Spark Notes logo, what a change… If you ask me, I think Quicktime went extreme: might be a bit slick and all but I miss the blue. What do you reckon?


  20. Lucas Tadeu Author Editor

    Great post.And I totally agree with @stefan, what is that new quicktime logo?I really liked Bebo’s new logo.
    .-= Lucas Tadeu´s last blog ..lucast182: Tips for creating a brand style guide http://bit.ly/jUmNl /great =-.


  21. Mike Author Editor

    Great amount of research involved in this. Makes this post very valuable and useful. Love to see more logos from more companies.


  22. ilz Author Editor

    Cool article.. some of them I didn’t even realize that they had a new logo.. and some just suuuuck!
    .-= ilz´s last blog ..How to make a Dotted Line in Photoshop =-.


  23. Peter Yee Author Editor

    Firstly, Quicktime new logo sucks.

    @Zach Dunn
    Actually, logos are going back to 2D. Take a look at cocacola or pepsi new logo, they are flat. Flat logos are more usable compared to 3D logo. Maybe what you showing us here are those were ‘glossed’ for certain purpose (exp: for poster, 3d video, web).


  24. rohnn Author Editor

    interresting to see how logo change as well with branding.

    when people start to know your brand you don’t need to write is’s name: red background with a huge curvy yellow M arches ? dont need company name does it. Instant recognition.

    First AOL => full name
    First AIM => full name
    First QT => full name

    Now that thos brands (or products) are well known, they hardly need any text content. Hence a better graphical logo.

    As for MSN hotmail, every almost evey logo change holds a “brand/product” change as well.


  25. Alfredo Angeles Author Editor

    somebody tell apple to go back with that quicktime logo


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    I have never seen so many spam replies in one place before…this must be some kind of record! Thanks for the article…poor old Ask Jeeves went backwards. They started with clean 2D vector lines, and devoluted to embossed 3D ayer style background…nasty.


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    Oh, I forgot to mention…check out these logos http://www.creativehat.co.uk/category/logo-galleries/

    Thank you.



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