Web giant Yahoo has updated its logo with slimmer letters, while keeping its familiar purple color and exclamation point.
This image released by YAHOO! shows the internet company's new logo. Yahoo! late on September 4, 2013. Web giant Yahoo has updated its logo with slimmer letters but kept the trademark purple color and exclamation point.
"We knew we wanted a logo that reflected Yahoo -- whimsical, yet sophisticated," Yahoo chief executive Marissa Mayer said in a blog post. "Modern and fresh, with a nod to our history. Having a human touch, personal. Proud."
On the Yahoo home page, visitors will see the familiar exclamation point dancing along the letters before settling at the end of the name at a slight angle.
The updated logo comes as the Internet pioneer continues a quest to re-invent itself after being eclipsed by Google in the world of online search.
Mayer said the Yahoo team "didn't want to have any straight lines in the logo. Straight lines don't exist in the human form and are extremely rare in nature, so the human touch in the logo is that all the lines and forms all have at least a slight curve."
As a result, the design has "thicker and thinner strokes -- conveying the subjective and editorial nature of some of what we do," Mayer said.
She added that the new logo evokes the "Yahoo yodel" by making the final O larger than the first.
"We wanted to preserve that and do something playful with the OO's," Mayer said.
"We wanted there to be a mathematical consistency to the logo, really pulling it together into one coherent mark."
The unveiling generated considerable reaction on social media and tech blogs, much of it unfavorable.
Silicon Valley gossip blog ValleyWag called the new logo "ugly," and the news blog TechCrunch noted that users still preferred the old design.
"Yahoo! turned the logo refresh into a month-long event, a purple smoke and mirrors affair to mask inactivity with marketing," wrote Sam Biddle on ValleyWag.
But Will Oremus at Slate wrote: "It doesn't matter whether the new logo per se is a winner or a loser. Yahoo is clearly the winner here, inasmuch as it has managed once again to get people talking about it in the context of change and new beginnings."
Mayer said she personally worked with the design team, joking: "I'm not a pro, but I know enough to be dangerous."
"We toyed with lowercase and sentence case letters. But, in the end, we felt the logo was most readable when it was all uppercase, especially on small screens," she added.
Mayer's plan for reviving Yahoo's fortunes includes making priorities of mobile devices, video, personalized digital content, and elevating the company's popularity outside the United States.
The faded Internet star's new symbol has been redesigned to better reflect what the company aims to be under Mayer, according to Yahoo chief marketing officer Kathy Savitt.
"While the company is rapidly evolving, our logo -- the essence of our brand -- should too," Savitt said.
Since former Google executive Mayer became boss at Yahoo early last year, the California company has snapped up more than 20 startups including the billion-dollar buy of blog platform Tumblr.
To build excitement about the change of the well-known purple logo, Yahoo teased US visitors with variations on the theme daily in the run up to the unveiling.
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