The app’s fetching new icon took nine months to come up with, Instagram design head Ian Spalter told Co.Design. The first step, he said, was to pinpoint the details that stuck out most from its original, beloved icon (the one Instagram had used since its inception):
At first, Spalter was most concerned with figuring out what elements people recognized most about the admittedly very complex and highly detailed Instagram logo. So he started by asking the whole company to draw the logo from memory in 10 seconds or less. “That gave us a sense of what was burned in,” Spalter says. What emerged were the camera lens, the rounded shape of the icon, and, surprisingly, the little black viewfinder in the top right corner.