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Google's New Favicon

Google's New Favicon

Google's New Favicon

Google FaviconsLast Friday, Google replaced their colourful upper-case 'G' icon with a more subtle lower-case 'g' icon. This has upset a lot of users who prefer the old one. Personally I don't really mind but what I found interesting is that the change has really impacted my browsing. I often have 10+ tabs open at the same time in my browser and switch between them often but it wasn't until Google changed their highly recognisable icon that I realised how much I rely on the icons to locate tabs. Every time I want to switch to a Google tab I spend several seconds scanning and re-scanning the tab bar looking for that familiar 'G'. When I don't find it, I start reading the tab names. Fortunately someone has thoughtfully created a Greasemonkey script that changes the Google favicon back to the original 'G'. On the whole I think the new lower-case 'g' icon looks nicer than the old one but the old one lets me work more efficiently! Who would have thought that favicons, regarded by many as a pointless gimmick when first introduced by Microsoft in Internet Explorer 5, would end up having such an impact on our productivity?

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8 Comments
Community Gaffer
It's the little things Cheesy
Wondered about this. It coincided with my decision to install Firefox 3 RC1 so at the time I just put it down to that. For the record, I like the old one better!
Similar Discussion: http://blogoscoped.com/forum/132365.html
N/A
I use them all the time. Once i had my bookmarks toolbar just all favicons. I would get frustrated when sites didn't have favicons because i wouldn't know what they where on the tool bar.
I really wasn't sure what to make of it either at first. I've actually found myself opening up Google again in another tab because I didn't realize that I already had it open. Bow down to the almighty favicon lol
Plusnet Staff
That threw me too.. in fact it'd not really clicked with me on a concious level at all until I read this Wink Official response from a Google spokesperson: "We recognized there was a need for a Google icon that would better work across multiple applications including web, mobile and client applications. We felt the small 'g' had many of the characteristics that best represent our brand: it's simple, playful, and unique. We will be looking to improve and enhance this icon as we move forward." http://searchengineland.com/080603-132251.php
N/A
You can see some other favicon concepts on the google blog: http://googleblog.blogspot.com/2008/06/one-fish-two-fish-red-fish-blue-fish.html
Sue
N/A
The company response is not very "user friendly". You'd think that market research would have shown that the public wouldn't like the litte "g" as much. I agree that it was more visible when trying to spot Google.