Home Brand Logos History, Meaning and Evolution Exceptional Evolution of the Iconic Dropbox Logo

Exceptional Evolution of the Iconic Dropbox Logo

by Mike Jansen

Dropbox is a renowned file hosting service, owned and operated by the American organization Dropbox, Inc. With its headquarters in San Francisco, California, it offers a range of services like cloud storage, file synchronization, personal cloud, and client software. With Dropbox, you can open a special folder on your desktop or laptop, which will be synchronized by Dropbox to make it accessible when viewed from any other computer or device. The files in this folder can be accessed using mobile apps and Dropbox website. The company offers both free and paid accounts for its users. Today, the Dropbox hosting service is one of the most popular data stores and runs in 17 different languages. 

Meaning and Origin of the Dropbox Logo

Like any big venture, Dropbox had its beginning with a petty personal problem solution. Drew Houston, one of its founders (the then student at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology), conceived the idea after forgetting his flash drive back at home and not having access to the completed task. It was then that he decided to do something in order to avoid such problematic situations. What’s more, he didn’t really like the services that existed then; they had difficulties from internet delay and transferring large files. 

While working on a project for himself, Houston realized that his ideas and inventions would be useful to many others facing similar challenges on their work front. As a result, he launched Evenflow, Inc. in 2007 and also received the necessary funding. However, Dropbox’s official launching date is 2008, when its service kicked off at TechCrunch Disrupt, a yearly technology conference. Its first logo was also introduced in the same year. Evenflow, Inc. was finally renamed Dropbox, Inc. in the fall of 2009. 

Remarkable Changes in the Dropbox Logo Design

Remarkable evolution of the iconic Dropbox logo

The Dropbox logo, which is undoubtedly one of the most iconic logos around, was first launched in 2008 and it was merely a scratch of the version we see today. Even though the design and color palette of the logo has evolved through the years, the basic concept remains intact.

Dropbox Logo from 2008 – 2013

Exceptional Evolution of the Iconic Dropbox Logo

The original 2008 emblem of Dropbox consisted of gradient blue open box images on the left and a compact, solid black wordmark in a title-case on the right. The soft shades of blue added a sense of creativity and freshness, whereas the bold, black letters of the wordmark depicted seriousness and professionalism. This very first emblem of the software had a 3D effect, with the box drawn in detail.

Dropbox Logo from 2013 — 2015

Exceptional Evolution of the Iconic Dropbox Logo

The rebranding project of 2013 modified the Dropbox logo, making it more geometrical and abstract. There was also a change in the color palette, with the soft blue being replaced by a bold intense shade, depicting reliability and authority. Although the new emblem had the open-box contours of the original version, it featured flat rhomboid images, adding style and modernism to the logo. The letters on this logo used the same blue shade as the box icon.

Dropbox Logo from 2015 — 2017

Exceptional Evolution of the Iconic Dropbox Logo

Although the structure of the emblem remains somewhat the same, the lettering changed in 2015. The inscription’s typeface got a makeover; the original sans-serif was replaced by another font with round letters and more space inside and between them. This change was particularly noticeable in letters with round and semicircular holes, such as in capital “D” and lowercase “o”, “p” and “b”. The standard blue shade of the Dropbox logo changed to one shade lighter.

Dropbox Logo from 2017 — Today

Exceptional Evolution of the Iconic Dropbox Logo

The redesign of 2017 gave the iconic emblem a more abstract look, by making the bottom part of the box look like another rhombus. This time, the letters used a thinner font compared to the previous ones and better box proportions. The new image is composed of five blue and one white rhombus which are perfectly proportionate in their sizes. The wordmark is written in the same sans-serif typeface as the previous versions, but this time the color blue was replaced by classic black.

Font and Color of the Dropbox Logo

Since the very beginning, the company name “Dropbox” was related to the image of an open cardboard box. This image underwent several minor changes until it attained the present look – five rhombuses or squares, one in the lower row and two (each) in the upper rows. There’s another white rhombus hidden in the negative space between the four blue rhombus figures. The bright blue and black details on the Dropbox logo, combined with white, look striking and memorable. They stand for the hosting application’s excellence, efficiency, and professionalism, focusing on its expertise and confidence. 

NOTE

The black title case is written in a traditional sans-serif typeface, which is quite similar to the Neue Helvetica family fonts. The inscription looks classic and professional. 

Dropbox rebranding project aims at promoting itself as a creative platform instead of a mere file-sharing service. Nevertheless, the design has attracted criticism for its use of conflicting colors. The new logotype is set in a squat san serif, resembling Motiva Sans, but somewhat customized for their brand. These modifications are similar to the subtle shifts made to the prior typeface Franklin Gothic.

The brand tagline “All Yours” narrates the real story of Dropbox’s advantage to the world – letting you keep all your details in one place yet share them with your collaborators. Possibly that’s why the brand chose a slightly more stretched logotype to match their mark.

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Exceptional Evolution of the Iconic Dropbox Logo
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