by Kevin Rabida . February 6th, 2016
Launched in 2009, Uber was initially a luxury black car service in San Francisco. Today, Uber is present in 400 cities in 68 countries. With services like uberX and uberPool, it has become more affordable to consumers and has disrupted prevailing taxi industry in each country.
Whether that is good or bad is subject to debate. One thing is for sure. The growth of Uber as a company is extraordinary.
In their newsroom post, Uber emphasized the merging of technology and the physical world, of bits and atoms, and the role Uber played in bringing these two worlds together.
“Uber ultimately succeeds because we think about the human stuff first. But the way we do it, that’s our secret. We leave no bit or atom unturned to create industries that serve people and not the other way around.”
The first recognizable change is the logotype. The curly U and R were trimmed and the lines were made thrice thicker. Sharp corners were also rounded and the E’s forks were slanted. Compared to the “1990s curls hairstyle” and thin lines of the previous logo, the new logo would enable users and consumers to read it from afar and in small resolution skills. This is in line with the recent logo changes by tech companies such as Facebook.
Building from their bit and atom concept, Uber also changed the design aesthetics of their main and local websites.
Using squares to represent bits, Uber’s website design hopes to “provide consistency, highlight information and make our brand easy to recognize.” The company is also going away with their “distant and cold” black and white colors. Instead, they will use colors and patterns from the cities they operate.
“The unique aspect of Uber is that we exist in the physical world. When you push a button on your phone, a car moves across the city and appears where you are. We exist in the place where bits and atoms come together. That is Uber. We are not just technology but technology that moves cities and their citizens.”
The final change and perhaps the most noticeable is the change in their app icon. Uber cites the huge change in their business model as the company is no longer just moving people but goods and packages as well.
While the new logos did a good job incorporating the technology part of their concept, it missed the human part. The two logos lack recognizability. With the old one, the black and white U stands out and the user immediately knows what app it is. The new logos are hardly memorable and would probably take time getting used to. Only time will tell.
Love it? Hate it? What are your thoughts on Uber’s new brand identity? Comment below!
Kevin is a reader first, a writer second, and a gamer somewhere in between. When not rooting for Tyrion Lannister for the Iron Throne, he's probably writing some morbid short story. He enjoys some surreal art, clever advertising campaigns, and a warm cup of coffee while reading Murakami.