Do You Know Why Apple Laptops Used To Have An Upside Down Apple Logo?


Apple’s PowerBooks and iBooks used to display the Apple logo upside down, i.e “pointing at the floor” when the laptop was opened. Do you know why? Former Apple employee Joe Moreno shares exactly why, in a recent blog entry (via TUAW). According to Joe, there were some discussions at Apple about the placement of the logo on the back of its laptops almost 12 years back. During a Q&A session, employees asked why the Apple logo is upside down on laptops when the lid is open? (as shown in image below). They were told by the Apple design group that they had studied the placement of the logo and discovered a problem.

According to Joe, they were told that :

If the Apple logo was placed such that it was right side up when the lid was opened then it ended up being upside down when the lid was closed, from the point of view of the user. (If you’re currently using an Apple laptop made in the past eight years, then close the lid and you’ll see that the Apple logo will be upside down from your point of view, but right side up when opened).

Why was upside down from the user’s perspective an issue? Because the design group noticed that users constantly tried to open the laptop from the wrong end. Steve Jobs always focuses on providing the best possible user experience and believed that it was more important to satisfy the user than the onlooker.

Thankfully, Steve decided to reverse his decision realizing that opening a laptop from the wrong end is a self-correcting problem that only lasts for a few seconds, while viewing the upside down logo is a problem that lasts indefinitely.

Cool story eh!


  • K3

    Used to work in film- the concern was that as Apple gained more and more exposure on screens that the product placement would take longer to recognize compared to how the logo is orientated now.

  • Djjessejamesvassie

    Lame. I would bet it was a CEO FUCK UP with a back up story to support it.
    No one is perfect.
    Accept this people.

  • JGB

    I have heard that the judge in the OJ trial was using a Macbook and the Apple logo was appearing upside down on national TV. Someone at Apple provided him with a special Macbook with the logo reversed.

  • ThatGuy

    I ALWAYS try and open my MacBook the wrong way! I’ll buy it.

  • Bbb

    not a cool story

  • iiiiiii

    True story…sort of. It was an IBM Thinkpad that had a small upside down logo on Judge Ito’s bench. I can’t remember for sure, but I think he turned down the offer.

  • Kirk

    Interesting. I never noticed that on my PowerBook. I now have a MacBook Pro. I have to see this to believe it.
    Now excuse me while I check this out.