Apple quietly killed its glowing logo today


Photo: Linus Ekenstam/
Photo: Linus Ekenstam/Flickr CC

The new MacBook is gorgeous, insanely thin, revolutionary and pressure-sensitive. It’s also missing one killer feature: a glowing Apple logo.

The shining bit of trade dress has been a pop culture icon ever since Apple released the PowerBook G3 in May 1999. However, it looks like Jony Ive’s design team is ready to sacrifice the glowing Apple beacon in the name of thinness. You’ll still find a light-up logo on the MacBook Airs and MacBook Pros, but it was never meant to be on Apple’s new golden beauties.

Take a look at the back of the new 12-inch Retina MacBook:

Macbook 4

Sporting a logic board that’s 67 percent smaller than the previous MacBook Air, the new MacBook is pretty much half-tablet. Its Intel Core M processor is super-efficient, but a bit of a weakling.

Bye-bye ‘Apple,’ hello ‘’

In other Apple symbol news, the company has expanded its use of swapping the word Apple for “” in ads.

Price sheets for the new MacBook feature an  symbol before the word “MacBook,” similar to TV and Watch. It’s a curious change, as the new notebooks aren’t called “Apple MacBook.”

Could more branding changes be on the way in 2015? Music doesn’t sound too bad.


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  • WhiteNinjaX


  • One of the things which I love about the Macbook is the glowing apple logo

  • Sean McCabe

    It’s still on the air and pro which got refreshes.

    • Tallest Skil

      1. Those aren’t remotely refreshes.
      2. They’re on the way out, too. Don’t kid yourself.

      • Sean McCabe

        So updating the processors like they do every year is suddenly not a refresh? You’re an idiot if you think they are going to kill the macbookpro.

      • Tallest Skil

        Yeah, keep your strawmen to yourself. I said no such thing.

      • Sean McCabe

        Maybe if you spoke clearly in the English language that would help.

      • Tallest Skil

        So now just your own illiteracy and ad-homs. Okay, then.

      • WhiteNinjaX

        2. They’re on the way out, too. Don’t kid yourself

        Now if that doesn’t mean you were telling him that they will be disposed of soon then I don’t know what language I’m reading.

      • Tallest Skil

        That’s pretty clear. What were we discussing in the article? Maybe that’s what the replies are about.

      • tjwolf

        I think it was clear that when @Tallest Skil referred to “They’re on the way out too”, he was referring to the glowing logos on MBPs, not MBPs themselves.

      • Sean McCabe

        It wasn’t clear at all. His first reference was to the MPB. His #2 reference said “They’re” as if he was still referring to the MPB.

  • Zippo

    The glowing logo was intruduced in May 1999 with the Powerbook G3 (Lombard), not in 2000 with the iBook.

    • BusterH

      thanks! corrected

    • poonani

      lol who the hell thought the apple logo should be upside down. jezuz

      • WhiteNinjaX

        If I recall correctly it had something to do with Steve wanting people to see the branding up right in front of them before they open it but then after seeing what TV shows/film crews had to do just to make it look good on the camera they realized their grave mistakes.

    • Jay B. Brown

      Blackbird, right?

  • Kr00

    The Magsafe just died too. Will our Macbooks go flying across the room when we trip over the cable now? Looks like a lot of sacrifices have been made to make this machine thinner. Like the biggest loser really.

    • [S]unjay

      And fanless design. *Sigh* Not a very productive machine.

    • I’m one of those who are hesitant to trade the MagSafe with the USB-C… at least for now. I’m loving this adapter.

  • AKC322

    I think I’ll be upgrading to a new Macbook. Air. 13-inch.

  • Wade Mason

    Bad grammar aside, what does the keyboard illumination have to do with the glowing logo? They’re on opposite halves of the computer.

    The logo glows because of the display backlighting (turn the display brightness up and down, you can see the logo dim and brighten). Either the new retina displays won’t allow for the same effect, or, more likely, it just boils down to thinness and strength.

  • Am I lost here? The “MacBook” itself was killed off 3-4 years ago and replaced with the air and the 13″ pro. Those never lost the glow. This is a whole new notebook is it not? So we got a brand spankin new notebook without the glow. I’m impressed actually.

    I feel the title to this article is very misleading.

    • WhiteNinjaX

      If you want to get technical it’s the xth generation Macbook (me referring to the plastic white MacBooks that were called MacBooks before they were killed off… they technically brought the line back with a HUGE update)

  • I guess all that brainpower just couldn’t do it…

    • J Stewart

      With today’s ultra powerful LED’s, I don’t see how the Glowing Apple Logo had to go away.

  • Terry Johnson

    It sounds worse than it is. Apple just took an iPad (which never had a glowing logo) with OS X and a keyboard and called it a ‘Macbook’.

  • UZ

    I might be the only one, but I always thought the glowing logo was a little bit tacky.

  • Anthony

    This is horseshit. I’m not paying $1500 for a device that doesn’t have a glowing logo. I’d pay $999 plus tax, tops.

  • Jordan Baker

    i was sad at first but damn does the new logo look good!

  • nutjob2

    Who cares? It’s a killer feature only for the pretentious.

  • J Stewart

    I really think Jobs would have disapproved of many of Ive’s decisions, like this one and the austere GUI design of IOS 7+, etc.

    • horcrux7

      What’s the point in wondering what Jobs would approve of or not? The man is long since dead. Apple has changed since his death, in many ways they’ve changed for the better. If he was still alive we would all have a 3.5″ iphone 6 :/

  • Facheux

    The gold Macbook is only slightly tackier than the gold watch.

  • peabody3000

    they might need to check with the beatles before marketing “[apple]music” lest they violate trademark agreements again

  • Shine Light

    I’m just badly sorry about Macbook without a growing logo. :(

  • stniuk

    The logo was good for one reason. When MS did an announcement you seen the crowd all using macs.

  • Zillo Mab

    I think it is an experimental Macbook. It is experimenting on the port, experimenting on the keyboard, experimenting on the battery, experimenting on the fan less main board and experimenting on our perception on the old style to a new style of computer.

    • Zillo Mab

      I’m not saying they can’t experiment, after all it is a successful company because of that, but could it be less unfriendly to customers?

  • Zillo Mab

    “swapping the word Apple for ‘’ on ads. Price sheets for the new MacBook feature an  before the MacBook, similar…”

    There will be a time when Apple will drop the Mac from Macbook, that will be a sad day indeed.

  • Zillo Mab

    My last post on the  Macbook is on the port, or lack of ports.

    I can see J.Ive saying “Nature is so perfect, it created us with two hands. One hand to hold the beautiful  Macbook and the other to connect the  adapter cable. And you can do that while using an  Watch on your wrist, which is wireless connected to your  iPhone or  iPad. All connected to your  ID.”

    • nutjob2

      Good thing this is your last post on the subject.

  • London Boy

    Why go smaller and thinner instead of going bigger and thinner (which would have been easier too) ..?

    I would have much preferred a larger than 13inch Air…

    • nutjob2

      Because bigger is still bigger. You go thinner when you go smaller because reducing that dimension doesn’t reduce functionality (although going smaller generally means you lose some things).

  • crateish

    Matches the shiny Apple on the backs of the iPhone 6/6 Plus, iPads, iMacs, and the Apple Watch.

    Consistent design.

  • Erock

    In my personal opinion this is the iPad Pro that everyone was expecting. As you can tell that the illuminated Apple logo has been removed and the lid looks exactly like the iPad. The lack of specs and i/o ports available. The charger looks like an iPhone/iPad brick. The keyboard looks like an after market one that you would buy for the iPad. To me this looks like an all in one iPad that runs OS X. Fan-less computers can’t run at maximum performance like the rMBP or even the Air since there is a chance for overheating. This is my opinion so I don’t really want to hear anyone bashing my comment. Thanks!!

    • nutjob2

      You don’t get it. People who aren’t blinded by marketing or “more is always better” idiocy realize that performance is not the problem but portability is. Most of these people don’t think their software is too slow, or think if it is 20% faster they will somehow be 20% more productive. These people want their computer with them all the time and don’t want to carry around a brick.

      The irony is that people who use their computer the most think about performance the least. The rest just want a faster computer because they think they’re better off, but they just don’t understand what performance actually is.

      • Erock

        Actually I do get it. I was referring to the rumors of an iPad Pro 12in. that has been rumored lately. I was stating that I believe this MacBook is actually the 12in portable that everyone was hoping to be the new iPad. I understand how the general public uses their computers. Most people don’t care about specs and only care about portability. That wasn’t the point I was trying to make. This MacBook has low specs, minimal expansion ports, a little power brick like the iPad, and the keyboard looks like the after market bluetooth ones currently on the market. It was just an opinion. Relax dude!!

      • tjwolf

        I think Apple will still bring out a 12″ iPad. This Mac isn’t like an iPad with keyboard or like the Microsoft Surface – for it isn’t trying to be a jack-of-all-trades. It’s simply the thinnest, lightest laptop Apple could produce (with some accompanying limitations).

      • Erock

        It might be possible. It’s just my opinion that they aren’t making the iPad Pro. The rumor mill about the iPad pro is that it is including multitasking/split screen, with the possibility of adding I/O ports. It just does’t make sense to add another iPad to the line since it is already crowded and sales are declining. To actually revive the MacBook line that was discontinued about 5 years ago just seems weird to me. As I stated it is just an opinion.

      • tjwolf

        I don’t believe the rumors of split screens and more user-facing multitasking, but I think a larger screen will be appreciated in lots of verticals – e.g. Doctors wanting to look at patient x-rays, students wanting a better textbook experience, accountant wanting to see more rows of their spreadsheets. Heck, if Apple could make a 12″ iPad that’s as light as their current ones, I might be tempted to upgrade – my iPad Air is not seeing much use after I upgraded my iPhone to a 6.

  • poonani

    Only The MacBook Pro line should have the glowing logo! Maybe the air too…. iGUESS.

  • AppleLion

    Isn’t just me or is Apple trying to kill the “i” and all their other “History” things?

  • Ummm….”logo has became”?!?! I lose faith in the credibility of a story when the writer (The Senior News Editor for Cult of Mac) makes such a blaringly obvious grammatical faux pas. Isn’t the editor supposed to be checking for content, spelling, and grammar in articles before they’re released? :(

    • English

      Don’t you mean ‘glaringly obvious’?
      Also, faux pas is a noun that means, “an action or a remark that causes embarrassment because it is not socially correct.”
      Lastly, you should say ‘commit a faux pas’ not ‘make a faux pas’.

  • Mark

    With the MacBook now being so thin just remember not to put it in your back pocket and sit on it. We don’t need another #bendgate!

  • TJ

    I can see why they’ve stopped using ‘i’ in front of everything and are moving to using Apple or  instead. Since the ‘i’ was adopted in front of all things Apple it’s become too mainstream and other companies now use the same moniker to brand their products and services. Getting rid of it and moving to Apple branded products and services is more of a deliberate effort to increase brand awareness and it also helps maintain brand exclusivity.