Exclusive: Some new Google app icons, and what they might mean for I/O 2018 [Gallery]

You may have noticed that we got our hands on some as-yet unreleased Google app icons this week, and we’ve slowly been trickling them out as we’ve become a little more confident on what they might mean. While all we have are these little icons and their names for now, here’s the full gallery of all the ones we have and what they might mean for announcements at Google I/O next week…

‘Google News’

It’s probably best to go in order from those we are most confident in to those we are least confident in. The first on the list, then, is the new Google News icon. It’s simply called Google News, and its existence happens to perfectly line up with a report from a couple days ago out of AdAge that Google is planning to completely revamp its news offerings next week.

According to the report, this forthcoming update to the Google News platform will consolidate all of the company’s various news services into one product. This unified “digital media destination” will reportedly incorporate digital magazines form Play Newsstand, as well as news videos from YouTube.

You can see the new icon below on the left, with the old Play Newsstand and Google News and Weather icons to the right:

‘One’

Next up is one that we felt confident enough in to do a writeup yesterday, but that post is still obviously sprinkled with lots of uncertainties. The new icon is simply called “One” in the file name, and we’ve basically come to the conclusion that there are three options here. It’s either 1) an icon for a new app specific to Android One phones (remember, this is an app icon), 2) a brand new app from Google that we’ve never heard of, or 3) a new icon for the long-forgotten One Today app. To us, it seems like the last of these three possibilities is the most likely.

Of course we could be completely wrong, but One Today hasn’t been updated in forever, and it’s obviously relatively unknown among Android users. It’s just a guess, but Google might be planning to revamp this app and renew its commitment to making it easy for users to donate to charity.

Below you’ll see the current One Today app icon on the right, and the new “One” icon on the left:

‘Ads’

While the previous two we felt had plausible enough explanations to be included in posts on the site, the next few are so mysterious to us that we left them for this post. This one is simply titled “Ads,” and interestingly looks a lot like the “One” and “Google News” icons. It also uses the bold Google colors to make a simple shape. In this case, though it’s just the yellow, blue, and green. That’s notable and might be a hint as to what this could be, because if you look at the current Google AdSense and Google AdWords icons, you’ll see that they use the same colors.

So this is a long shot, but here’s my crackpot theory: Google could be combining the AdSense and AdWords apps into one product simply called “Google Ads”. That’s just a guess, but it might make sense somehow — AdWords isn’t really a feature-rich app and unifying the ad experience on both ends might simplify things for users. To add to the evidence, the AdWords app looks really outdated and is in dire need of a refresh.

Below you’ll see the old “AdSense” and “AdWords” app icons, with the “Ads” icon to the left:

‘Migrate’

Another one that we have an educated guess for but not much evidence is called “Migrate”, which is a basic icon with three paper planes, a blue background, and drop shadows that go down and to the right. Interestingly, it’s an almost identical design to the current Data Transfer Tool app that Google has for the Google Pixel and Pixel 2. In that case, it’s a weird-looking white wire.

So our theory on this one, for now, is that this is simply an updated version of the Data Transfer Tool. The name “Migrate” makes a lot of sense for that, and the icons are almost identical in design. We’ll see what happens at I/O, but this one, if it’s even mentioned, could potentially bring some changes to the Data Transfer Tool, too? Maybe Google is opening it up to work with any Android device and wanted a user-friendly name?

Data Transfer is on the right, and the new Migrate is on the left.

 

And some more…

There’s three more icons that we have here, but we don’t really have any theories we’d even consider plausible for them yet, as we do the ones above. Here’s what we’ve got, along with their cryptic names. Let us know in the comments if you have any theories on what they might be.

PLX — Here we have a ribbon-like icon that incorporates the three colors we see on the new “Ads” icon. It’s called “PLX,” which doesn’t stand for anything obvious in our minds. That’s about it on this one.

Insights — Next up is insights. The only thing we could find relevant would be PageSpeed Insights? Perhaps the up and down arrows resemble upload and download? That might make sense.

MDC iOS — Our only thought on this is perhaps “Material Design Components.” Nothing else really comes to mind.

Let us know what you think these new app icons might mean below!

Dylan contributed to this article.

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