Microsoft is a multinational company formed in 1970 by Bill Gates and Paul Allen. She specializes in the production of software for various digital devices. Today the corporation is the author of one of the most widespread operating systems – Windows. Its head office is located in Redmond, Washington, USA.
Meaning and History
Microsoft has several versions of the logos – about seven. Each of them is associated with certain transformations and reflects its evolution from a little-known firm to the digital industry’s world-famous giant.
1972 – 1975
The organization began operations in 1970 as a company called Traf-O-Data. She was engaged in the production of computer equipment for traffic lights on the roads of Washington. During the government period, the enterprise was transformed into a new structure named Microsoft. It happened on April 4, 1975.
Its emblem was originally played with the letters “T,” “O,” “D,” which formed the name. It was a combination of a graphic sign with text. The original symbol in the form of superposed black “T” and “D” with a white “O” was located to the left of the full name of the organization. The word is written in the form of a combination of upper and lower case letters on a light background.
1975 – 1980
When the company changed its name to Microsoft, it immediately introduced its new logo, which bears little resemblance to the modern one. The letters were lined and echoed with the road theme – as if they were stylized city streets. The characters in the upper register were wide, even, smooth, of the same height.
1980 – 1982
In 1980, an emblem appeared that remotely echoes the usual version. She had almost no free inter-letter space, so at some points, the characters merged. Each character had an oblique cut in the upper or lower part, and the elongated legs “M,” “R,” “F” went far beyond the border of the word.
1982 – 1987
Having existed for only two years, the previous version received an update. The company name is now written in an even thin sans serif typeface. The graphic emphasis is placed on the first “O” located in the very middle. Thin, short strokes surround it.
1987 – 2011
In 1987, a recognizable and familiar logo was approved. It consisted of slightly oblique letters written in lowercase, except the first, which was capitalized. On the link between “o” and “s,” a slash is visible, emphasizing the movement and dynamics in the “softest” part of the word (there are the most smooth lines). Scott Baker created the updated logo.
This logo can still be seen on some portals and older products of the software company. In particular, it is still up-to-date on the Windows / Microsoft Update and Windows Vista website, in the Windows XP boot window, and on the Windows XP Professional documentation page, etc.
2011 – 2012
With the emergence of the slogan, approved in 2011, the corporate logo received a new design: the developers reduced the letters’ slope. But this version existed for only a year – until the second half of August 2012.
2012 – today
After a radical redesign, another emblem was presented. It already consists not only of text but also of graphics. These are four multicolored squares representing the corporation’s main products – Bing, Windows, Xbox, and Office. At the same time, it cannot be argued that this technique has become an absolute novelty: a similar version has already appeared in the 90s in advertising for Windows 95 and, since 2009, has been present in the Microsoft Store symbols.
But the word “Microsoft” was changed and received a new modification. The letters became equally smooth, thin, gray. The only accent was the alignment between “f” and “t”: they, as before, are connected by horizontal strokes.
Font and Color of the Emblem
The current logo focuses on the global reach of the areas in which Microsoft operates. According to the administration, the updated design conveys the transition from the classic interface to the progressive one, which takes time. Therefore, it consists of one large square divided into four small ones. The tiled design reflects convenience, as most digital products now use this format.
Previously, the emblem had an individual font, formed based on the classic. Only the position of the word changed – straight or oblique. After the redesign, the new version received the Helvetica font from the neo-grotesque category. It was developed in 1957 by Haas’sche Schriftgiesserei from Switzerland.
Until 2012, the predominant logo color was black on a white background. It became colorful: the letters were light gray, the squares were red, green, blue, and yellow.