Launched in 2010, Flipboard is a news and social network aggregator — or, in its words, a “curation platform” — that allows users to select feeds from various news websites and social media accounts which are then delivered in an attractive and cohesive experience that can be flipped through easily. It was originally developed for the iPad and it was one of the coolest most useful apps in the early days of the iPad. It has since expanded to Android and to browsers on desktops and laptops and now counts with more than 100 million monthly active users. Recently Flipboard introduced a new identity designed in-house in collaboration with San Francisco, CA-based Moniker.
Our original manifesto states “great stories move the world forward.” We believe access to high-quality content and diverse perspectives helps us make informed decisions, take action and be better world citizens. This is why our logo was conceived in 2010 as a window onto great stories, with transparent window panes at its center.
So this year, we reimagined the logo as a fully open window, reset our logotype using our custom Fakt Flipboard condensed, and restored balance to the lockup. Our red also got a nice refresh. We’re just a little brighter everywhere.
When I first got an iPad (that I won in a webfont competition for the design of Quipsologies, thank you) and had no idea what to do with it, Flipboard was basically the only application I used or found useful. I gave up on the iPad years ago and was surprised to hear Flipboard is still around. Good for them! Anyway, on to the logo… I always liked their slightly pixelated “F” icon; it was simple and striking. Its evolution into a single-color version with no transparency makes sense as more and more logos go basic. In this case, it works great for the icon as it’s literally less fuzzy, it’s as simple as it gets, and it yields a great-looking icon/monogram. The old wordmark was fine but the new one — in a customized version of Fakt — works a lot better.
With an icon that has such defined edges and a nice, big square area, it’s no surprise they went with the logo-as-window approach for some applications but I like that they pushed that idea a little further to create a puzzle-like treatment that gives an interesting twist to the approach.
Our F becomes a distinct storytelling platform where we can feature inspiring points of view.
And, you might notice a staircase in the white space. This was a serendipitous discovery, but once we saw it, we couldn’t unsee it. Because it speaks so well to our vision of advancing the conversation, the team decided to pursue this concept in more depth.
The stair led to the development of what we are calling the F Step pattern. […] What we landed on are a set of specific juxtapositions that map to our core identity. From the macro to the micro, local to global (self investment, to community engagement), to strong opposing forces or different sides of a story.
The effect is quite attractive and sort of dramatic, creating interesting intersections of the images when two are paired together and generating stark moments of white space (as in the posters) that make both the images and the logo at the bottom stand out.
In addition, there is also a thick, red line element that can be used as an underline or strikethrough and works quite well with the condensed font. It provides Flipboard a somewhat serious editorial vibe that makes the app feel a little more important than it just being a news aggregator.
Overall, this is a great update that maintains the equity of the original brand but infuses it with new energy and meaning in a way that is smart and considerate.