It’s with joy and pride that we announce to you the name and icon change of our groundbreaking client for Gmail — formerly known as “Gmail for Mac”, we’re now “Kiwi for Gmail”! There are two primary reasons why we’re doing this: To have a distinctive identity of our own, and to be good corporate citizens.
Identity: Despite the love and care that we poured into our initial icon and the pride we took in a name that called our app exactly what it was - “Gmail” for the “Mac” - as we started to gain traction and exposure, we began to feel pretty limited by our earlier choices. The problem with our old name and image was that we felt it put us under Google’s shadow, and didn’t quite do service to the unique product we’d poured all of our passion into. We had a growing longing to have an image that was more distinctive, one that we could stand behind and allow us to be known unambiguously as ourselves. The time to do that, we knew, was prior to launch.
Doing the Right Thing: Our second reason was that, in the weeks following our highly popular Kickstarter campaign, we were contacted by Google. They were very friendly, positive, and generally supportive of what we’re doing, but were concerned our branding and name might confuse people about whether we were Google or a different company.
Google was very easy to work with and didn't insist on anything. But given our own prior misgivings about our name, we chose to do the hard work of rebranding ourselves to make them comfortable and give us a solid identity we could proudly identify ourselves with.
Kiwi for Gmail: The new Gmail for Mac
Finding a name that we felt could capture the fresh and friendly approach to Gmail that we’ve created was something that was important to us, and we’ve felt that “Kiwi for Gmail” does that in a way that we’re proud of. Our new icon was something we wanted to feel bright and cheerful, but also blend beautifully into the aesthetic Apple’s established with OS X Yosemite. In our app itself, our colors and GUI have been subtly enhanced to match the beauty of the new brand as well, in a way that we hope you find as fun, fresh, and beautiful as we’ve striven to make it. Here is a link to a high-res version of the above image.
A big principle that drives us is that our design should really blend into its context and feel like “part of the machine”. Our icon will sit on your dock and be present in various contexts all over OS X, and so we picked a shape and colors that look and feel like they’re part of the OS — an icon that looks at home around other OS X icons.
Rebranding our Company
With a very active beta, we’ve gotten wonderful response to our new icon and name, and with launch coming so soon, we’re pleased to announce it to the wider world. Today we’ve launched a new website, and changed the whole face of the company as can be seen through our Twitter and Facebook pages.
The very best to all,
The Zive Team