Yesterday Instagram came out with an update of its logo and branding, and not surprisingly, people either love it or hate it. Personally, I think it’s far less interesting, and strays too far away from the “hipster” vibe they started with in favor of following the bigger trend of simplified design concepts. It’s trying to cater to the oversimplification that came around with the Bauhaus and Swiss design styles, but adding the unusual gradient causes it to fall short of achieving that look. The original Instagram logo had a certain nostalgic appeal, with its vintage font and Polaroid-based camera style. That was a logo that said a lot about the brand. This one…doesn’t.
Each business has to decide for itself when is a good time to change their branding. Many global brands have updated their look over the years, but the bigger they are, the more likely they are to choose subtle changes. They know that at least some consistency is needed. Changing icons and logos too often can leave people confused and discourage brand loyalty.
In my opinion, there was no need for Instagram to change its branding already. The company is only a few years old, and it’s been growing steadily almost ever since it began. To me, this is a case of “don’t fix it if it ain’t broke”.