New iTunes 10 Icon Does Not Suck. But It’s Irrelevant

Did you have that ‘Where-did-that-come-from?‘ feeling when Steve Jobs unveiled the new iTunes icon during the media event earlier this week? Apple has a logical answer to the makeover. The sale of digital music is fast outpacing CD sales and is supposed to overtake the sale of these physical goods by next year. So it’s time the CD was pulled off the icon.

Old itunes vs. new iTunes icon

And like it is with most changes, many people thought the new icon sucked. Designer Joshua Kopac thought that way too. And he decided to write to Jobs about it.

“Steve,

Enjoyed the presentation today. But…this new iTunes logo really sucks. You’re taking 10+ years of instant product recognition and replacing it with an unknown. Let’s both cross our fingers on this…”

Jobs incidentally replied,

We disagree.

Sent from my iPhone

So, what’s the verdict? Does it suck or not? Doesn’t matter actually. People will get used to the new icon over time. But what matters is if the new design actually captures what the product is. And in this case, the new iTunes 10 icon does a poor job in reflecting what iTunes does. Of course, iTunes is still primarily an online music store and the icon perfectly reflects that. But what is not reflected is the change that iTunes has gone through in the past few years and what it will be moving forward.

iTunes today includes the App Store. And this means you can purchase not only music, but also movies, TV shows, ebooks, games, media tools, business applications,etc. The list is virtually endless. That being the case, the new iTunes store does not clearly reflect these changes.

So Steve, you are right. But you are also wrong.

2 thoughts on “New iTunes 10 Icon Does Not Suck. But It’s Irrelevant”

  1. I dislike the logo as well, but keeping a logo for “product recognition” is not smart when CD’s are very quickly dying. iTunes is the one-stop music download for most people. Barely anyone buys a CD and imports it to iTunes. I think it was smart to get rid of the CD on the logo, however, I feel it wasn’t smart to pick the colour scheme that they did. It’s too reminiscent of windows media player, which is a horrible abortion of software.

  2. I agree that there was a good reason to remove the CD from the logo, but I really dislike the new logo. 1. It doesn’t nicely match the rest of the icons on my dock anymore. 2. It looks like something I could whip up in Illustrator in less than half an hour. It looks cheap, unbalanced and otherwise out-of-keeping with what we’ve come to expect from Apple.

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