Can you spot the hidden meaning in these 13 famous logos?


Posted on Mar 09, 2016

The companies behind some of the most infamous logos spare no expense when it comes to branding, ensuring they not only stand out, but stick around in the consumer's subconcious.

Some also choose to have a little fun while relaying their subliminal messaging - including some pretty big-hitters like Amazon and Wikipedia.

Part brain-teaser, part optical illusion, some will jump out at you straight away. But others will have you puzzling for a while and one in particular requires solid binary number knowledge.

So go ahead and see how susceptible your subconscious is to hidden messaging with these 13 logos.


1. Toblerone

If you stare REALLY carefully at the Toblerone logo, aside from probably craving chocolate, you may see something else.



Give up?

Within the picture of Matterhorn the image of a bear is hidden.



The reason behind this is the animal appears on the coat of arms for Bern - the home of Toblerone.


2. Amazon

This one is a double whammy, with two messages concealed.



Give up?

The first is a smiley face represented by the arrow. And the second is also thanks to the arrow, which goes from A to Z, just like their deliveries aim to.


3. Le Tour de France

Perhaps this one's a little simpler, as you may already know what to look out for.



Give up?


But if you can't see anything beyond the sign, look at the letter R - it's in fact a cyclist riding their bike.



4. FedEx

The FedEx sign has got the company over 40 trophies over the years.

The Independent declared this "one of the most famous design 'secrets' in the world". Can you crack it?



Give up?

If you look between the E and the X, you'll see there's an arrow going from left to right. This, apparently, symbolises the direction, speed and precision of the company's logistics.


5. Eighty20

It's time for a tough one. Binary number knowledge at the ready to solve this data strategy company's puzzling logo?



Give up?

We needed the explanation for this.

The dark squares are 1s in binary. The blank ones are 0s, meaning the top line equals, 1010000, which is 80 in binary.

With this in mind, the bottom line is 0010100 equalling 20.


6. Continental

After that maths puzzler, let's go back to a more straightforward one.

The Continental sign has an image representing its product - but do you see it?




Give up?

Another logo which utilises its letters. The C and the O symbolise a tyre - precisely the product Continental makes.


7. Elefont

Here's another nice one, courtesy of brand design firm Elefont. But do you see what we see?








Give up?

Inside the negative space the E makes, is the shape of a tiny elephant's trunk!



8. Wikipedia

It's a site we all know, love and go to as soon as there's any sort of debate in the pub. But do you understand what their symbol is communicating?


Give up?

This one is a test of linguistic knowledge rather than maths (or binary numbers).

The explanation Wikipedia offer is: "Each piece bears a glyph (a letter or other character), or glyphs, symbolizing the multilingualism of Wikipedia.

"As with the Latin letter 'W', these glyphs are in most cases the first glyph or glyphs of the name 'Wikipedia' rendered in that language.

"The empty space at the top represents the incomplete nature of the project, the articles and languages yet to be added."


9. London Symphony Orchestra


The letters spell out LSO, but they also draw a picture. Is it clear what it is?



Give up?

The letters make the shape of a conductor conducting their orchestra.


10. Picasa

How good is your Spanish? The software package for your photos is both a visual and linguistic teaser. Look really closely, and there's a clue within. But can you see it?




Give up?

Bear with us on this one! The colourful outside of the logo not only symbolises a camera shutter, but they form the outline of a house. Or 'casa' in Spanish.

So take the 'pic' from 'pictures' and you have a house for your photos.



11. Museum of London

This is one for the history buffs. What is the Museum of London logo meant to signify?




Give up?

The shifting and changing borders of London are represented by each overlaying colour, from when it was just a small riverside town to the huge city it is today.


12. Sony Vaio

It clearly spells 'Vaio', but there's a deeper more mathematical meaning behind this particular logo.



Give up?

For those who didn't, the V and A show an analogue signal. And it's back to binary numbers again with the I and O representing a digital signal.

So not only does this handily spell Vaio, The Independent also points out how it nicely demonstrates the "history and evolution of technology from analogue to digital".



13. Cisco

There's a small clue in the name with this one. But how does the technology company's name tie in with the logo?



Give up?

On the way to register their company in San Francisco, the founders were inspired by its famous landmark, the Golden Gate Bridge, the shape of which the lines make a rough image of.