China's most famous mobile phone company just released its first folding mobile at the same time it announced its entry into the electric vehicles industry, but that's not what most people are talking about. The smartphone maker Xiaomi also unveiled a "brand-new logo" that actually looks very similar to the previous one, and the Chinese social media community doesn't seem impressed or pleased about it. So what are the main reasons behind this change? Was this redesign worth the $300,000 investment?
The Xiaomi's CEO Léi Jūn 雷军, announced 2 days ago at a keynote conference the brand new identity of the company as part of its “refreshed new corporate visual identity”. But what people are noticing is that the most impacting change on this redesign is the square shape of the brand's frame that transitioned to a "rounded-edged" square.
After revealing Xiaomi's new logo, the CEO explained the reasons behind this change and why it was so hard for him to let go of the "original" logo that the company kept for more than 10 years. After years of searching for the perfect designer or design firm for this change, Xiaomi's team finally settled for the world-renowned Japanese Graphic Designer Kenya Hara, which is known for his minimalistic style (he's also the art director of MUJI and a professor at the Musashino Art University).
After joking about the similarities of both logos, Léi explained that the designer “didn’t just change the shape from square to round” but also changed “the internal spirit as well as the mentality of the brand.” He also noted that this new shape was based on the “superellipse” mathematical formula and that the firm actually took a long time to decide which of them was the perfect one for Xiaomi, having into account that the rebranding process started in 2017. The main purpose for the final look of this logo was to get the perfect visually optimal dynamic balance and a perfect equilibrium between a square and a circle. It actually looks really harmonious, don't you think?
Here are some of the shapes that were considered for this rebrand. If I asked you which of them was them was the chosen one, what would you say? If you answered number 3, you are totally right!
Besides changing the frame shape, the brand also made small changes to the font that will accompany the Xiaomi logo. The company will also continue to use its orange shade as their cooperative color, however, it will use silver and black variants as supplemental tones for high-end products!
Although most people are having fun at Xiaomi's expense, this type of subtle redesigns is actually really common in the tech industry and it goes from big corps like Samsung to Microsoft to Apple. Like Hara said during a video segment, “The design is essentially a reflection of the concept Alive." So if you're still feeling that this rebrand was not worth its investment: don't. Although the changes are subtle, there's a lot of visual impact that will slowly and unconsciously change the way that Xiaomi is perceived by the audience, not only in China but in the rest of the world.
To finish off, here are some funny memes we found online. Enjoy!