4. Apple

Year Company Founded: 1976

Year Logo Introduced: 1976

Logo Designers: Ronald Wayne (1976), Rob Janoff (1977), Landor Associates (1984), Apple (1998, 1998-2007)

Company Founders: Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, Ronald Wayne

The Apple logo began with an intricate design by co-founder, Ronald Wayne, and was inspired by Isaac Newton's discovery of gravity, incorporating the Wordsworth quote, "Newton..a mind forever voyaging through strange seas of thought...alone," and featuring the words "Apple Computer Co." Instructed by Steve Jobs to replace the complex design with something not "too cute," Rob Janoff created the 1977 logo featuring a rainbow-striped apple illustration and the word "apple." It was supposed to appeal to young people and highlight the computer's unique ability to reproduce colors. The 1977 logo also featured the now iconic "bite" taken out of the apple, which was supposed to distinguish the illustration from a cherry.

In 1984, coinciding with the release of the Apple Macintosh, the company decided to simplify the logo to the lone apple, thinking it iconic enough without the accompanying word. Since 1984, the company has tweaked the design of the Apple logo, modifying colors and shading, though it has never steered away from the now distinctive symbol of the company.

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