What’s in a name?
Google announced that it is rebranding itself as Alphabet last week, a move which sparked furious debate on the internet, in the media and across the globe. Was there a hidden reason for the move? What will be the impact of this rebrand? Will it really change anything for the everyday Google user?
The short and simple answer to this last question is no (unless you own a company already called Alphabet. Spare a thought for Alphabet Signs in Pennsylvania who have experienced a 30% drop in search traffic since the announcement).
Google itself isn’t actually undergoing a rebrand, it will still have the iconic coloured letters and quirky, themed animations. It is now just part of a larger parent company called Alphabet (chosen because ‘it means a collection of letters that represent language, one of humanity’s most important innovations, and is the core of how we index with Google search’), and has been ‘slimmed down’ with different parts of the business now separated from Google to sit underneath the Alphabet umbrella. This is a very smart move by the company and its founders. Alphabet is now free to pursue other interests (such as Calico (its longevity program and the Life Sciences division of Google X) as separate entities, meaning the Google brand remains pure and untarnished. While Google remains synonymous with search and advertising, the future for Alphabet is still to be decided. But one thing is for sure, if I want to find out what’s going on, I know which search engine I’ll be turning to first.