Technology: Game-changer changes name

Everything Everywhere, the mobile network that's rolling out 4G, is rebranding itself. What's behind the switch from one odd title to another?

Yesterday, Britain's largest mobile phone network announced that it was rebranding itself. Everything Everywhere, which was formed from the merger of Orange and T-Mobile in July 2010, now purports to serve 27 million customers. But given that both the original brands have remained in place, even Everything Everywhere's own customers could be forgiven for being unaware of its existence. Now, however, Everything Everywhere is to become "EE". All of its Orange and T-Mobile retail locations will take the new brand name, which will also apply to the UK's first super-fast 4G mobile network, to be launched in 16 cities by Christmas.

Network rebranding is common, and often preceded by a merger or an acquisition. T-Mobile was One2One until 2002. O2 was once BT Cellnet. The names of the major networks have steadily decreased in length and complexity, finally arriving at simple letters and/or numerals: T-Mobile, EE, O2, 3. The new EE logo – two Es interlocking, Venn-diagram circles with a clubby colour scheme – resembles nothing so much as a pair of ecstasy pills. It is designed, said EE brand and comms chief Steven Day yesterday, to be "purposeful and playful". But what's in a name? Why pick two meaningless Es over the just-about-self-explanatory Everything Everywhere?

"'Everything Everywhere' was a very unusual choice," says Emma Peto, managing director of brand creation consultancy Nomen UK. "It's almost a strapline rather than a name, and all the mobile networks have been trying to put across those two words for some time without actually saying them. So it's quite bold for one of them to have just come out and said it. They've probably thought about how people will refer to the brand in future; they're aware it's long and unusual and they want to pre-empt people shortening it to 'EE' themselves."

Though people aren't as fashion-conscious about their networks as they are about their phones, Peto explains: "For a consumer-facing brand like a mobile phone network, the brand name has to be memorable, and you can't have something that's easy to ridicule. Mobile networks are very international and it's virtually impossible to find a name that will mean the right things to all its consumers." (BlackBerry's "Curve" handset, for example, closely resembles the word for "whore" in Czech, Slovak, Serbian, Croatian and Hungarian.)

Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookA delicious collection of 50 meaty main courses
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Gadgets & Tech

    Recruitment Genius: Support and Development Engineer

    £20000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The leading provider of Employee Managem...

    Recruitment Genius: Creative Designer

    £15000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Kent based design consulta...

    Recruitment Genius: IT Gazetteer Consultant

    £25000 - £34000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Are you looking to work for an ...

    Recruitment Genius: Regional Support Manager

    Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This role's responsibility also include operat...

    Day In a Page

    Is this the future of flying: battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks?

    Is this the future of flying?

    Battery-powered planes made of plastic, and without flight decks
    Isis are barbarians – but the Caliphate is a dream at the heart of all Muslim traditions

    Isis are barbarians

    but the Caliphate is an ancient Muslim ideal
    The Brink's-Mat curse strikes again: three tons of stolen gold that brought only grief

    Curse of Brink's Mat strikes again

    Death of John 'Goldfinger' Palmer the latest killing related to 1983 heist
    Greece debt crisis: 'The ministers talk to us about miracles' – why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum

    'The ministers talk to us about miracles'

    Why Greeks are cynical ahead of the bailout referendum
    Call of the wild: How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate

    Call of the wild

    How science is learning to decode the way animals communicate
    Greece debt crisis: What happened to democracy when it’s a case of 'Vote Yes or else'?

    'The economic collapse has happened. What is at risk now is democracy...'

    If it doesn’t work in Europe, how is it supposed to work in India or the Middle East, asks Robert Fisk
    The science of swearing: What lies behind the use of four-letter words?

    The science of swearing

    What lies behind the use of four-letter words?
    The Real Stories of Migrant Britain: Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won't have him back

    The Real Stories of Migrant Britain

    Clive fled from Zimbabwe - now it won’t have him back
    Africa on the menu: Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the continent

    Africa on the menu

    Three foodie friends want to popularise dishes from the hot new continent
    Donna Karan is stepping down after 30 years - so who will fill the DKNY creator's boots?

    Who will fill Donna Karan's boots?

    The designer is stepping down as Chief Designer of DKNY after 30 years. Alexander Fury looks back at the career of 'America's Chanel'
    10 best statement lightbulbs

    10 best statement lightbulbs

    Dare to bare with some out-of-the-ordinary illumination
    Wimbledon 2015: Heather Watson - 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

    Heather Watson: 'I had Serena's poster on my wall – now I'm playing her'

    Briton pumped up for dream meeting with world No 1
    Wimbledon 2015: Nick Bollettieri - It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve

    Nick Bollettieri's Wimbledon Files

    It's time for big John Isner to produce the goods to go with his thumping serve
    Dustin Brown: Who is the tennis player who knocked Rafael Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?

    Dustin Brown

    Who is the German player that knocked Nadal out of Wimbeldon 2015?
    Ashes 2015: Damien Martyn - 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

    Damien Martyn: 'England are fired up again, just like in 2005...'

    Australian veteran of that Ashes series, believes the hosts' may become unstoppable if they win the first Test