Microsoft Corp.(Nasdaq: MSFT) unveiled its first new logo in 25 years as it prepares to introduce Windows 8, an updated version of its flagship software that will power the company’s own Surface tablet and other touch-screen devices.
The logo uses the so-called Segoe font, which is used in Microsoft products and marketing materials, and four colored squares that are “intended to express the company’s diverse portfolio of products,” the Redmond, Washington-based company said on its blog.
“In advance of one of the most significant waves of product launches in Microsoft’s history, today we are unveiling a new logo for the company,” Jeff Hansen, general manager for brand strategy, wrote.
“It’s been 25 years since we’ve updated the Microsoft logo and now is the perfect time for a change. This is an incredibly exciting year for Microsoft as we prepare to release new versions of nearly all of our products. From Windows 8 to Windows Phone 8 to Xbox services to the next version of Office, you will see a common look and feel across these products providing a familiar and seamless experience on PCs, phones, tablets and TVs. This wave of new releases is not only a reimagining of our most popular products, but also represents a new era for Microsoft, so our logo should evolve to visually accentuate this new beginning.”
Hansen noted that the logo has “two components: the logotype and the symbol. For the logotype, we are using the Segoe font which is the same font we use in our products as well as our marketing communications. The symbol is important in a world of digital motion (as demonstrated in the video above.) The symbol’s squares of color are intended to express the company’s diverse portfolio of products.”
The world’s largest software maker has revamped products including Windows, phone software and the Xbox game machine to adopt a sleeker, more modern-looking design to compete with Apple Inc. for style-conscious consumers.
Not “Your Father’s Microsoft”
The new logo is meant “to show that this isn’t your father’s Microsoft, and there is something fresh, but also familiar,” said Michael Gartenberg, an analyst at market research firm Gartner Inc. It also helps to show Windows and Microsoft’s overall new design language, formerly known as Metro, are “relevant and aspirational to the market.”
The redesign comes as consumers are increasingly choosing the tablets over laptops, weakening personal-computer sales and curbing Windows revenue. The company has said it plans to release Windows 8 on Oct. 26 and the Surface with an ARM Holdings Plc-based chip at the same time.
For the past several years, Microsoft has been trying to forge a more unified look and feel for the company’s products using a colorful, tile-based design first unveiled as part of Windows Phone under the name Metro. Earlier this month, Microsoft retired Metro, stating that it was used merely as a code name.
(Bloomberg contributed to this report.)