A brief history of the Apple Logo

It is one of the most iconic logos of all time. Apple seems like a strange name for a computer company and certainly an original one. The origin of its logo or brand are among the most discussed and speculated.

Original Logo
The original Apple logo from 1976 featured a hand drawn image of Isaac Newton under the tree where the apple fell and was designed by co-founder Ronald Wayne. So why Apple? Obviously looking at the first logo, it would be easy to tie its influence to Isaac Newton, and there a lots of other stories too. Some suggest apple being the fruit of knowledge, based on the Adam and Eve story. One of the most interesting stories we read was that the original rainbow apple logo was a tribute to Alan Turing, considered by many to be the father of the modern computer system. In 1954 he committed suicide by cyanide poisoning. A half eaten apple was found with his body, which was thought to have contained the cyanide. Hence forth a half eaten apple was a symbol for Alan Turing and his life’s work; and thus the Apple logo, with a bite out of it was a reference to this. Despite the interesting stories, from what we gathered is the truth is much simpler. Apparently it results from Steve Jobs having worked in apple orchards when he was younger and stuck for another name decided to name it after his favorite brand of apples, McIntosh apples. Plain and simple. Dejected yet?

Rainbow Logo 
The iconic rainbow logo was designed by Rob Janoff. Janoff himself said that the bite of the apple was added to ensure it resembled an apple and not a cherry. The bite also symbolized knowledge and was a reference to the computer term byte. The colored stripes were apparently to make the logo more accessible and emphasize the modern nature of the application of color on computer screens for the first time. The rainbow logo stuck around for 22 years until Steve Jobs returned to the company in 1997. One of the main reasons for moving into a somewhat simpler form was apparently the production costs. Producing a colored logo was much more expensive, especially on the computers themselves.


Current Logo
Apple has gone even more minimalistic with the logo that is currently in use. It is sometimes used on other products in various other colors as well. It goes to show the importance of simplicity in logo design as the same form has been reinvented with such success over so many years. Apple has changed its image and the Apple, with such a strong basic shape has been able to keep pace with the change.


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