Is Google Introducing A New Design Style?

A new design style spotted in the graphics of a new Gmail “inbox zero” message may point to big tech moving towards skeuomorphism.

Gmail has introduced a new celebratory graphic for users who accomplish the mythical “inbox zero” status on their email accounts.

The brand new graphic, first spotted by Android Police, updates its style and shifts away from the modern corporate art style seen across almost all industries, based on the Alegria concept of 1920s-like, flat, minimalist, geometric, and colorful forms big tech corporate communication is obsessed with.

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The cliche style, which seeks to convey and evoke sentiments of openness, friendliness, and trustworthiness, is currently the base for all corporate art styles representations. But the latest update may point to a halt in the use of the overly seen, used, and abused Alegria.

Up until now, Google used this same design style to surprise the few users who obtain the unobtainable by reaching the “inbox zero” target. The “You’ve finished!” message was accompanied by a geometrically shaped landscape with a generic woman with disproportionate body parts wearing a yellow sweater.

In contrast to the widespread use of flat Alegria figures, Google has now decided to present those who reach inbox zero with new graphics that move towards skeuomorphism. While the abstract is still present, the result of the change in style is drastically different: the new image shows 3D boxes stacked and assembled.

Finally, the congratulatory message has changed to read “You’re all done!”

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