Amazon just fixed its controversial new app icon

Amazon has never been particularly synonymous with stylish design. From its homepage to its packaging, the company's aesthetic is perhaps best described as 'functional'. But last month's new Amazon's app icon felt like a rare foray into sleek and striking minimalism – until users spotted the rather unfortunate design fail. And now, mere weeks later, Amazon has already fixed it.

Appearing on several regional app stores, the new icon (below) features Amazon's signature arrow/smile on a brown background (presumably based on its cardboard boxes), along with a hint of the company's bright blue parcel tape. (Check out our logo design guide if you're looking for more inspiration.)

Amazon app icons

The new logo (right) vs. the previous version (left) (Image credit: Amazon/Future owns)

At first glance, there's lots to like about the new icon. By placing the smile, perhaps Amazon's most recognisable visual asset, front and centre, it comes across as a simple yet confident design. It's also bound to stand out on your homescreen. In a sea of overly-minimal logos on white backgrounds (yes, Google, we're talking about you), Amazon's effort is likely to draw your attention. Indeed, none of our best iOS app icons are also based on cardboard. 

But while some corners of the internet love the new icon, others spotted a somewhat unfortunate design flaw – and once you see it, it can never be unseen. It's all about that tiny strip of blue tape. When placed above the 'smile', it looks a little like a moustache. And not just any moustache, but, according to Twitter, a rather familiar one.

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And it seems Amazon has taken note. Over the last week, company has quietly rolled another new app icon featuring a subtle tweak to that parcel tape moustache. Gone is the jagged edge in favour of a straighter (read: less hairy) cut, while a peeled back corner screams: 'guys, this is tape. It's definitely not moustache. Okay?'

Amazon app icon

The new logo (left) vs the new, new logo (right) (Image credit: Amazon)

If we're honest, we'd have preferred to see Amazon do away with the distracting blue tape altogether, leaving just the minimal arrow/smile atop the cardboard brown. But hey, at least the new version looks a lot less like you-know-who.

As these 12 infamous design fails show, Amazon is no means the first company to get into hairy situation, design-wise. And if you fancy changing Amazon's icon yourself, you can – here's how to customise your iOS 14 homescreen icons.

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Daniel John
Senior News Editor

Daniel John is Senior News Editor at Creative Bloq. He reports on the worlds of art, design, branding and lifestyle tech (which often translates to tech made by Apple). He joined in 2020 after working in copywriting and digital marketing with brands including ITV, NBC, Channel 4 and more.