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These Are Google Chrome’s New Material Design App Icons

This Is Chromium's New Material Design Icon

Anyone using Chromium, the open-source base that underpins Google Chrome, will soon notice something different: a brand new icon.

The newly revamped Chromium logo is already in use in the latest developer build of the open-source browser, where it’s displayed on the ‘settings > about’ page.

It’s an obvious design evolution that, like Google Chrome’s new icon, introduces a flatter, brighter and more ‘Material Design’ appearance. The gradients are toned down and the color is ramped up but it’s still recognizably the Chromium icon.1438189952_full.jpeg

Chromium’s new icon has not yet been set as the application icon (the one you click to open the app) but it – excusing any last minute decision – will be in the near future.

‘Why is this news?’ is what a lot of you are probably asking. And that’s fair. After all, this is a passive change, not an interactive one.

But even so, design tweaks, however inconsequential in silo, are worth noting. If for the reason that subtle tweaks to the look of software used daily gets hard to notice as the branding becomes second-nature and we become blind through utility.

That point leads us neatly on to the new icon for Google Chrome. This icon is one you’ve probably already seen but not consciously noticed.

Google Chrome’s New Icon

1438199550_thumb.jpegA ‘material design’ icon for Google Chrome is on the way. In fact, it’s already ‘out there’ online, and already used by Google Chrome for Android.

Unlike the changes in the new Chromium icon the changes in the new Chrome icon are less apparent. You can see a rough transition between old and new Google Chrome logo in the following gif.New chrome logo animated gif Eagle-eyed spotters will notice a few differences between the current and proposed material icon, including:

  • Flatter appearance with different colours
  • Segment shadows now tuck under the fold, not extend outside it
  • White inner ring is thicker
  • Inner blue dot is lighter, no inset shadow, no gradient
  • The top down lighting/glow has been switched off
  • Swirl segments are ‘tighter’

Design Changes Are Important to Note, Even if You Don’t Care

No matter how trivial or minor, any design tweak in a piece ‘user critical’ software like Google Chrome is not done lightly, doubly so when the “brand” is involved. As with the new Chrome Web Store Icon, the changes made are done intentionally, with a specific purpose, aim or goal in mind.

Subtle icon tweaks they are. But a change in branding often marks a deeper shift in overall thinking behind the product, one that will, inevitably, extend beyond it.

A new icon today, a new look tomorrow…

  • I’m so happy Google finally decides to update the main chrome icon! I complained awhile back of this because I use a Chromebook on the Canary channel, and almost everything was Material… Except CHROME itself! The icon felt so out of place and you can’t unpin chrome in Chromebooks for the obvious reason. I hope there is a flag for this soon for Canary! :D

    • Are you kidding me? I use Chrome OS Canary too and I can say that NOTHING is Material there! Except for the Files explorer, some icons and the loading animations. Nothing besides that is Material yet.

      • I was only refering to pin icons, sorry.

        • Phew, now I got you. Don’t need to apologize. XD
          I’m almost sure that the icon will (only) change when Chrome gets a major revamp to MD, top and bottom.

          By this I mean:
          Tab, omnibar and buttons’ icons will be just like in Chrome for Android tablets.
          Shelf, taskbar and tray. More materialized.

          I thought that would happen this year, at Google I/O, and was so excited to see this. Now I just lost all my hopes…

  • Degru

    Google also seems to have added Material Design loading icon animations to the latest version of Chrome, at least on Linux.

  • Luctreebusch

    They need to get the whole chrome browser a material design update

    • I think it’s planned but will take a *long* time to implement.

    • I hope that happens before 2020…

    • Jacob Groß

      They’re working on it right now. Get the latest chrome dev channel, about:flags and search for material. Several options. They don’t do much yet, but something is better than nothing.

  • liamdools

    Great, now my Windows 10 desktop will look even more flatter and boring.

    • SuppliedRelic

      Flat and minimalistic design is the modern trend and is here to stay, like it or not.

  • Vin

    You know, sometimes branding and brand extension is bovine excrement. Take a look at the GE logo called “The Meatball”; It was created in 1890 and modified slightly in 2004. GE is the world’s 4th most valuable company and none of that wealth was due to modifying a logo, but part of that wealth is by leaving the logo as is. I will admit though that GE has proprietary fonts.

    • naysayer

      Um, GE is a really slow moving dinosaur. They wouldn’t last a day in the tech world.
      Google has a tech mindset. It suited them well so far.

      • Vin

        Um, GE has more money than God. Why? Because of intelligent business decisions.
        That said, I am reasonably happy with what Google does, but I don’t see a need to tweak icons and “designs” over and over again. If it works, it works. There hasn’t been a revolution in cutlery has there? Well, an icon isn’t much different than cutlery – it has a simple job to do, so why change it if it already does what it’s supposed to do. Maybe I am just being grumpy, LOL.

        • But cutlery should improve, they just didn’t yet. There is a company that made a special spoon for people who suffer from Parkinson’s syndrome. It reamins stable even with the hands shaking, and that’s the kind of thing that makes life better to people (even for some of them).

          • Vin

            At least that’s a genuine improvement. This change to the icon is not really an improvement.

  • Gary Graf

    First icon looks the best

    • SuppliedRelic

      Surely you’re not referring to that original glossy 3D icon for Google Chrome, are you?

  • It’s absolutely gawgeous, darlings!! Google girl in a Google world!

  • Vin

    Seriously, instead of changing icons, change options and features which enhance privacy over ease-of-use. For instance, what if you have a family member watch the screen with you on your Chromebook and you start typing in the Omnibox and something personal and uncomfortable appears – like medical research documents and sites related to your new medical condition that you don’t want your spouse or kids to know about? Or what about “Offline” or “Recent” in the My Drive folder? How can I suppress the display of Omnibox predictions? How can I suppress the display of Recent or Offline or Download? Chromebooks are easy-to-use convenient machines if you NEVER plan on having anyone else see your profile. Tweaks to settings and flags are nice, but the need to suppress and delete at ANY point in time is critical. I shouldn’t have to change a setting and then Powerwash and I shouldn’t have to use a different profile.

    • You can disable prediction services in Settings by going to the bottom, clicking “Show advanced settings…”, and it’s the second check box under the Privacy section. If you don’t want people to know what you’ve been researching you could always do those searches in an incognito window, that way they won’t appear again. You can completely disconnect your Google Drive account in the File Manager by going to Settings, going to the bottom, clicking “Show advanced settings…”, and it’s the second check box under the Downloads section, I don’t think you can just hide Recent or Offline though. I also don’t think you can remove your Downloads folder. If you don’t want to keep your Downloaded files in the Downloads folder, you can just delete them after you’re done, use Guest so they don’t stay after you log back into your Profile, or you can save them on some external storage device like a USB Drive.
      I hope this helps in someway.

    • I would point out that the design team is responsible solely for design. New icons don’t come at the expense of other features.

  • view2share

    Next up, enlarging the fonts on the bookmarks bar and tabs for Chrome OS, so you can read them. Chrome is fine on my ubuntu PC, but then again, I can control the fonts on Linux ubuntu OS.

  • Zack

    Google’s designs have come a long way.

  • Logan Combs

    The material icon is more straight then the old one if you didin’t notice

  • wirelesscord

    I’d love to see this minimalist trend go all the way through: in 2022, the icon will be a circle in one color.

  • Miguel Pérez

    Things keep getting uglier and “flatter”… just for the sake of looking “new” or “different”. Same goes for the Google logo. This flat fad which is about ugly, low colour, grey on white, waste of screen estate and use of margin instead of UI elements, divisors and looks, hiding features and other things, is cancer… and I can’t wait to see it fade away like all design fads, and be back to high-colour, 3D and the best technology has to offer, not toy store style.

    • SuppliedRelic

      You’ll be waiting for a long time.

    • lu9

      first of all there is a big difference between material and flat.
      material is like flat, but with shadows and lighting for perception of depth and layers.
      and the philosophy behind “flat” design is simply that, no interface really
      needed to be “glossy” or “3d” when they could be just simple and friendly (at least thats what i remember)
      in your opinion flat and material styles may be ugly, but there’s also a lot of people who like it.

      • SuppliedRelic


      • Skunky

        i peronally, like the new logo. it looks sleek and more professional.

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  • I use Ubuntu, and also have Windows, but Google is discontinuing 32 bit Chrome support, so I opted for Chromium now for my Ubuntu, only…I have NEVER liked that “all blue” icon! I want my Chromium to “cheat” and use Chrome’s icon! Still searching how to change it