The Babbel Blog

language learning in the digital age

Babbel Kitted Out in a New Design

Posted on December 16, 2013 by

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As of today Babbel presents itself with a completely new look: new colors, new shapes – and a new logo. For months our team of designers, brand experts and representatives from design agencies toiled from dawn till dusk on logo ideas. Since Babbel’s beginnings we have continued to evolve and develop, and the new logo with the “human plus” reflects this development. We wanted to display the same recognisable Babbel design across all our platforms, from the website to the mobile apps.

Why? I hear you ask. Darjan Salimi and Ray Pham explain everything in an interview with Babbel copywriter Nina Pollex.

Babbel suddenly looks very different. What’s the reason for this so-called “redesign”?

Darjan: The time was just right. We started off really small in 2007 and are today one of the fastest growing startups in the world. A lot has changed. And also, since the introduction of the new mobile apps, we’ve been wanting to create a consistent design across all platforms. Babbel has grown up, it has become a brand. And we want to also show that visually.

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The new colors catch your eye immediately. What else has changed?

Ray: The entire user interface is now much cleaner and clearer and therefore much easier to use. That was important for us. Users should be able to navigate quickly and intuitively on our page. The design is flatter, more modern and I think has also become more aesthetic. And of course there’s a whole new logo! But that is just the beginning. Design is always a fluid process, and we still have a long and exciting road ahead.

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Why didn’t you simply stick with the old, familiar logo?

Ray: The old logo looked youthful and playful with the rounded letters and the quotation marks. We had the feeling that it no longer suits us. Learning should be fun, but it’s more than just a game. It is something that in the best case can have an everyday influence and impact on the user’s whole life. That’s what the plus in the logo stands for. It looks more professional and more serious. It is mature, just like Babbel. We don’t have to hide, and that’s what we’re showing with this logo.


Can you tell us a little more about the significance of the Plus in the logo?

Ray: I do believe speaking a new language is always a Plus. We want everyone to have the opportunity to expand his or her knowledge with Babbel. This is the positive impact that is depicted in the Plus. The Plus immediately reminds the onlooker of the human form, and symbolises the fact that we put the learners and their needs at the very heart of the product. The Plus is a “Human Plus”.


How long have you worked on the project and how did the idea come about?

Darjan: It was actually launched in the summer, while we were working on the development of our new apps for iOS. We had to change a lot, to optimize Babbel for small screens, also the design. But the interim results instantly felt so good that we quickly decided to bring the new design to all other platforms.

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What was the biggest challenge?

Darjan: We were working simultaneously on three construction sites: the apps, the web page and the trainers within the courses. It wasn’t easy to coordinate everything in such a narrow time frame. Everybody helped. It was a team effort, and I’m really proud of what we’ve achieved.

Ray: For me, the biggest challenge was the new logo. We wanted to create the best Babbel logo of all time; one which gives a new face to babbel while remaining accessible for our regular customers. Despite all the changes, we haven’t forgotten who we are. Babbel’s heart is still the same.


What does Babbel mean for you personally?

Ray: It’s such a great feeling to learn something new that it can give you a huge amount of energy. Babbel gives you exactly this feeling and in the best possible way.

Darjan: For me, Babbel is a success story that shows that you can achieve a lot with a good idea and plenty of effort. And I’m glad to be a part of it.

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The facts about the new look at a glance:

-       New logo — more serious, can be used more flexibly, more recognisable

-       New design of website and apps – more modern, clearer, easier to use

-       Duration of the project: about half a year

The following were involved:

-       Five Babbel designers from five different countries

-       Nerd Communications

-       Mamapapacola

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Comments

Mit dem neuen Logo kann ich leben, es wirkt seriöser, aber es ist mir ziemlich egal. Die Übersichtlichkeit der Menüs ist nicht besser geworden.
Die Hauptsache aber: die Bedienung ist deutlich schlechter geworden. Ständig die Return-Taste benutzen zu müssen kostet letztlich viel Zeit. Leider sind auch im Wiederholmanager nun Bugs. Ich wünsche mir die alte Version oder wenigstens eine Wahlmöglichkeit. Fazit: ein Relaunch auf den ich hätte verzichten können. Sorry.

Tja, das neue “outfit” finde ich eher bescheiden. Nicht wirklich ansprechend oder “Laune machend”. Es wirkt weniger seriös als fade. Spröde! Die Kombination von Freude mit Seriösität ist nicht wirklich gelungen. Mir hat das Vorherige besser gefallen. Schade….

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