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Wolff Olins worked in close friendship with Microsoft and their own Pioneer Studios to develop KIN from its infancy.


Their ambition was to create a new Windows, cloud-based, integrated product that would offer the ultimate mobile experience for a young social generation who increasingly want and need more from their phones. We were tasked with creating the driving idea, strategy, overall
attitude, architecture, product persona, as well as both the visual and verbal identity for the brand.


From the beginning, KIN was going to be unique in its space and from Microsoft. Unlike other Microsoft consumer brands, KIN is not for
everyone. It’s singularly designed with specific users and their specific needs in mind.

We determined early on to build an endearing, sustainable brand with more innovations to come, not simply launch a one-off product. We focused on what we saw as untapped emotion and reality in the mobile and social spaces, exploring the excitement and intimacy of user behavior to create a declarative brand that’s grounded in brutal honesty, reality and emotional bravery... Nothing fake. KIN is for real life.


In keeping with the spirit of the brand, we collaborated with multiple agencies and individuals to bring the KIN experience to life, including
Cinco (product and retail), TAG (advertising), Razorfish (web), Exposure (experiential) and others. Along with a tight-knit and trusting Microsoft team, this collective approach was refreshing and key to bringing this non-typical, non-traditional brand experience to fruition.