List of Origins of IT Companies | iVittal

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Tuesday, 03 August 2010 12:09

List of Origins of IT Companies

Here is a list of IT company names with their Origins explained. Read this everyday which will defnitely helps you in time of IT Quizzing.


  • 3Com – Network technology producer; the three coms are computer, communication, and compatibility.
  • Accenture – from "Accent on the future". The name Accenture was proposed by a company employee in Norway as part of an internal name finding process (BrandStorming). Before January 1, 2001, the company was called Andersen Consulting.
  • Acer – Born as Multitech International in 1976, the company changed its name to Acer in 1987. The Latin word for “sharp, acute, able and facile”
  • Adobe Systems – from the Adobe Creek that ran behind the house of co-founder John Warnock.
  • Alcatel-Lucent – Alcatel was named from Société Alsacienne de Constructions Atomiques, de Télécomunications et d'Electronique. It took over Lucent Technologies in 2006.
  • AltaVista – Spanish for "high view".
  • – founder Jeff Bezos renamed the company Amazon (from the earlier name of after the world's most voluminous river, the Amazon. He saw the potential for a larger volume of sales in an online (as opposed to a bricks and mortar) bookstore. (Alternative: Amazon was chosen to cash in on the popularity of Yahoo, which listed entries alphabetically.)
  • AMD – Advanced Micro Devices
  • AOL – from America Online. The company was founded in 1983 as Quantum Computer Services.
  • Apache – according to the project's 1997 FAQ: "The Apache group was formed around a number of people who provided patch files that had been written for NCSA httpd 1.3. The result after combining them was A PAtCHy server."
  • Apple – For the favorite fruit of co-founder Steve Jobs and/or for the time he worked at an apple orchard, and to distance itself from the cold, unapproachable, complicated imagery created by other computer companies at the time – which had names such as IBM, DEC, Cincom and Tesseract
  • Apricot Computers – early UK-based microcomputer company founded by ACT (Applied Computer Techniques), a business software and services supplier. The company wanted a "fruity" name (Apple and Acorn were popular brands) that included the letters A, C and T. Apricot fit the bill.
  • – search engine formerly named after Jeeves, the gentleman's gentleman (valet, not butler) in P. G. Wodehouse's series of books. Ask Jeeves was shortened to Ask in 2006.
  • Asus – named after Pegasus, the winged horse of Greek mythology. The first three letters of the word were dropped to get a high position in alphabetical listings. An Asus company named Pegatron, using the spare letters, was spun off in 2008.
  • AT&T – the American Telephone and Telegraph Corporation officially changed its name to AT&T in the 1990s.
  • Atari – named from the board game Go. "Atari" is a Japanese word to describe a position where an opponent's stones are in danger of being captured. It is similar, though not identical, to "check" in chess. The original games company was American but wanted a Japanese-sounding name.
  • ATI – Array Technologies Incorporated
  • BBC – British Broadcasting Corporation, originally British Broadcasting Company.
  • BenQ – Bringing Enjoyment and Quality to life
  • BMW – Bayerische Motoren Werke (Bavarian Motor Factories).
  • Boeing – named after founder William E. Boeing. It was originally called Pacific Aero Products Co.
  • Bosch – named after founder Robert Bosch. Robert Bosch GmbH (full company name) is a German diversified technology-based corporation.
  • Bose Corporation – named after founder Amar Bose.
  • BSNL – from Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (India Communications Corporation Limited).
  • CA – Computer Associates was founded in 1976 as Computer Associates International, Inc. by Charles Wang
  • Canon – Originally (1933) Precision Optical Instruments Laboratory the new name (1935) derived from the name of the company's first camera, the Kwanon, in turn named after the Japanese name of the Buddhist bodhisattva of mercy.
  • Casio – from the name of its founder, Kashio Tadao, who had set up the company Kashio Seisakujo as a subcontractor factory.
  • Cisco – short for San Francisco.
  • Compaq – from computer and "pack" to denote a small integral object; or: Compatibility And Quality; or: from the company's first product, the very compact Compaq Portable.
  • COMSAT – a contraction of communications satellites. This American digital telecommunications and satellite company was founded during the era of U.S. President John F. Kennedy era to develop the technology.
  • Corel – from Cowpland Research Laboratory, after the name of the company's founder, Dr. Michael Cowpland.
  • Cray – supercomputer company named after its founder, Seymour Cray.
  • DEC – Digital Equipment Corporation, a pioneering American minicomputer manufacturer founded by Ken Olsen and taken over by Compaq, before Compaq was merged into Hewlett-Packard (HP). It was generally called DEC ("deck"), but later tried to rebrand itself as Digital.
  • Dell – named after its founder, Michael Dell. The company changed its name from Dell Computer in 2003.
  • Digg, Inc.- Kevin Rose's friend David Prager (The Screen Savers, This Week in Tech) originally wanted to call the site "Diggnation", but Kevin wanted a simpler name. He chose the name "Digg", because users are able to "dig" stories, out of those submitted, up to the front page. The site was called "Digg" instead of "Dig" because the domain name "" was previously registered, by Walt Disney Internet Group. "Diggnation" would eventually be used as the title of Kevin Rose and Alex Albrecht's weekly podcast discussing popular stories from Digg.
  • The Walt Disney Company, named for its co-founder Walt Disney.
  • EA Games – EA is from Electronic Arts. The company was founded in May 1982 as Amazin' Software and changed its name to Electronic Arts in October the same year.
  • eBay – Pierre Omidyar, who had created the Auction Web trading website, had formed a web consulting concern called Echo Bay Technology Group. "Echo Bay" didn't refer to the town in Nevada, "It just sounded cool", Omidyar reportedly said. Echo Bay Mines Limited, a gold mining company, had already taken, so Omidyar registered what (at the time) he thought was the second best name:
  • EDS – Electronic Data Systems, founded in 1962 by former IBM salesman Ross Perot. According to the company history: "He chose Electronic Data Systems from potential names he scribbled on a pledge envelope during a service at Highland Park Presbyterian Church in Dallas."
  • Eidos – named from a Greek word meaning "species". The company became well-known for its Tomb Raider series of games.
  • ESPN – Entertainment and Sports Programming Network
  • ESRI – Environmental Systems Research Institute, the first geographic information system (GIS) software company founded by Jack and Laura Dangermond in Redlands, California, in 1969
  • Epson – Epson Seiko Corporation, the Japanese printer and peripheral manufacturer, was named from "Son of Electronic Printer"
  • Facebook – name stems from the colloquial name of books given to newly enrolled students at the start of the academic year by university administrations in the US with the intention of helping students to get to know each other better.
  • Google – an originally accidental misspelling of the word googol and settled upon because was unregistered. Googol was proposed to reflect the company's mission to organize the immense amount of information available online.
  • HCL – Hindustan Computers Ltd, Indian software company founded by Shiv Nadar.
  • HP – Bill Hewlett and Dave Packard tossed a coin to decide whether the company they founded would be called Hewlett-Packard or Packard-Hewlett.
  • Hitachi – old place name, literally "sunrise"
  • Honeywell – from the name of Mark Honeywell, founder of Honeywell Heating Specialty Co. It later merged with Minneapolis Heat Regulator Company and was finally called Honeywell Inc. in 1963.
  • Hotmail – Founder Jack Smith got the idea of accessing e-mail via the web from a computer anywhere in the world. When Sabeer Bhatia came up with the business plan for the mail service he tried all kinds of names ending in 'mail' and finally settled for Hotmail as it included the letters "HTML" – the markup language used to write web pages. It was initially referred to as HoTMaiL with selective upper casing. (At one time, if you clicked on Hotmail's 'mail' tab, you would have seen "HoTMaiL" in the URL, but since Hotmail is now Windows Live Mail, it is no longer there.)
  • HTC Corporation – A contraction of its original corporate name, High Tech Computer Corporation.
  • IBM – named by Tom (Thomas John) Watson Sr, an ex-employee of National Cash Register (NCR Corporation). To one-up them in all respects, he called his company International Business Machines.
  • Infineon Technologies – derived from Infinity and Aeon. The name was given to Siemens's Semiconductor branch (called Siemens HL or Siemens SC/SSC) when it was spun off.
  • Intel – Robert Noyce and Gordon Moore initially incorporated their company as N M Electronics. Someone suggested Moore Noyce Electronics but it sounded too close to "more noise". Later, Integrated Electronics was proposed but it had already been taken, so they used the initial syllables (INTegrated ELectronics). To avoid potential conflicts with other companies with similar names, Intel purchased the name rights for $15,000 from a company called Intelco. (Source: Intel 15 Years Corporate Anniversary Brochure)
  • Ittiam Systems – an Indian company named from the famous philosophical dictum: "I think therefore I am" (Cogito, ergo sum).[39]
  • Infosys – An Indian software major. "Information Systems"
  • Kodak – Both the Kodak camera and the name were the invention of founder George Eastman. The letter "K" was a favorite with Eastman; he felt it a strong and incisive letter. He tried out various combinations of words starting and ending with "K". He saw three advantages in the name. It had the merits of a trademark word, would not be mis-pronounced and the name did not resemble anything in the art. There is a misconception that the name was chosen because of its similarity to the sound produced by the shutter of the camera.
  • Lenovo Group – a portmanteau of "Le-" (from former name Legend) and "novo", pseudo-Latin for "new". This Chinese company took over IBM's PC division.
  • LG – from the combination of two popular Korean brands, Lucky and Goldstar. (In Mexico, publicists explained the name change as an abbreviation to Linea Goldstar, Spanish for Goldstar Line)
  • Lotus Software – Mitch Kapor named his company after the Lotus Position or 'Padmasana'. Kapor used to be a teacher of Transcendental Meditation technique as taught by Maharishi Mahesh Yogi.
  • Lucent Technologies – a spin-off from AT&T, it was named Lucent (meaning "luminous" or "glowing with light") because "light as a metaphor for visionary thinking reflected the company's operating and guiding business philosophy", according to the Landor Associates staff who chose the name. It was taken over by Alcatel to form Alcatel-Lucent in 2006.
  • Motorola – Founder Paul Galvin came up with this name when his company (at the time, Galvin Manufacturing Company) started manufacturing radios for cars. Many audio equipment makers of the era used the "ola" ending for their products, most famously the "Victrola" phonograph made by the Victor Talking Machine Company. The name was meant to convey the idea of "sound" and "motion". It became so widely recognized that the company later adopted it as the company name.
  • Mozilla Foundation – from the name of the web browser that preceded Netscape Navigator. When Marc Andreesen, co-founder of Netscape, created a browser to replace the Mosaic browser, it was internally named Mozilla (Mosaic-Killer, Godzilla) by Jamie Zawinski.
  • Napster - The service was named Napster after Fanning's hairstyle-based nickname.
  • Nero – Nero Burning ROM named after Nero burning Rome ("Rom" is the German spelling of "Rome").
  • Netscape – Originally the product name of the company's web browser ("Mosaic Communications Netscape Web Navigator"). The company adopted the product name after the University of Illinois threatened to sue for trademark infringement over the use of the Mosaic name. Netscape is the combination of network and landscape.[citation needed]
  • Nikon – the original name was Nippon Kogaku, meaning "Japanese Optical".
  • Nintendo – Nintendo is the transliteration of the company's Japanese name, nintendou . The first (nin) can be translated as to "entrusted"; ten-dou means "heaven".
  • Nokia – started as a wood-pulp mill, the company expanded into producing rubber products in the Finnish city of Nokia. The company later adopted the city's name.
  • Novell – Novell, Inc. was earlier Novell Data Systems co-founded by George Canova. The name was suggested by George's wife who mistakenly thought that "Novell" meant new in French. (Nouvelle is the feminine form of the French adjective 'Nouveau'. Nouvelle as a noun in French is 'news'.)
  • Oracle – Larry Ellison, Ed Oates and Bob Miner were working on a consulting project for the CIA. The code name for the project was Oracle. The project was designed to use the newly written SQL database language from IBM. The project was eventually terminated but they decided to finish what they started and bring it to the world. Later they changed the name of the company, Relational Software Inc., to the name of the product.
  • Philips – Royal Philips Electronics was founded in 1891 by brothers Gerard (the engineer) and Anton (the entrepreneur) Philips.
  • Pixar – from pixel and the co-founder's name, Alvy Ray Smith. According to the biography "The Second Coming of Steve Jobs" by Alan Deutschman, the 'el' in pixel was changed to 'ar' because 'ar' is frequently used in Spanish verbs, implying the name means "To Pix".
  • Qualcomm – Quality Communication
  • Raytheon – "Light of the gods". Maker of missiles such as Patriot, Maverick, Sidewinder and Tomahawk, among other military technology.
  • Red Hat – while at college, company founder Marc Ewing was given the Cornell lacrosse team cap (with red and white stripes) by his grandfather. People would turn to him to solve their problems and he was referred to as that guy in the red hat. By the time he wrote the manual of the beta version of Red Hat Linux he had lost the cap, so the manual included an appeal to readers to return his Red Hat if found.
  • Samsung – meaning three stars in Korean.
  • Sanyo – meaning three oceans in Japanese.
  • SAP – SystemAnalyse und Programmentwicklung (German for "System analysis and program development"), a company formed by five ex-IBM employees who used to work in the 'Systems/Applications/Projects' group of IBM. Later, SAP was redefined to stand for Systeme, Anwendungen und Produkte in der Datenverarbeitung (Systems, Applications and Products in Data Processing).
  • Sega – Service Games of Japan was founded by Marty Bromley (an American) to import pinball games to Japan for use on American military bases.
  • SGI – Silicon Graphics Inc.
  • Siemens – founded in 1847 by Werner von Siemens and Johann Georg Halske. The company was originally called Telegraphen-Bau-Anstalt von Siemens & Halske.
  • Skype – the original concept for the name was Sky-Peer-to-Peer, which morphed into Skyper, then Skype.
  • Sony – from the Latin word 'sonus' meaning sound, and 'sonny' a slang word used by Americans to refer to a bright youngster, "since we were sonny boys working in sound and vision", said Akio Morita. The company was founded as Tokyo Tsoshiu Kogyo KK (Tokyo Telecommunications Engineering Corporation) in 1946, and changed its name to Sony in 1958. Sony was chosen as it could be pronounced easily in many languages.
  • Sun Microsystems – its founders designed their first workstation in their dorm at Stanford University, and chose the name Stanford University Network for their product, hoping to sell it to the college. They didn't.
  • TCS – from Tata Consultancy Services, from India's Tata Group, named after founder and legendary industrialist Jamshedji Tata.
  • TIBCO Software – The Information Bus Company. The company was founded by Vivek Ranadive as Teknekron Software Systems in 1985.
  • Toshiba – named from the merger of consumer goods company Tokyo Denki (Tokyo Electric Co) and electrical firm Shibaura Seisaku-sho (Shibaura Engineering Works).
  • Twitter - social networking and microblogging service. The name was derived from the original idea 'Twitch', which didn't bring up the right imagery.
  • Ubuntu Foundation – named from a Zulu word (ùɓúntú) that translates as "humanity to others".
  • Unisys – from United Information Systems, the new name for the company that resulted from the merging of two old mainframe computer companies, Burroughs and Sperry [Sperry Univac/Sperry Rand]. It united two incompatible ranges. The new-born Unisys was briefly the world's second-largest computer company, after IBM.
  • Verizon – a portmanteau of veritas (Latin for truth) and horizon.
  • Virgin – founder Richard Branson started a magazine called Student while still at school. In his autobiography, Losing My Virginity, Branson says that when they were starting a business to sell records by mail order, "one of the girls suggested: 'What about Virgin? We're complete virgins at business.'"
  • Vodafone – from Voice, Data, Telefone. Vodafone made the UK's first mobile call at a few minutes past midnight on 1 January 1985.
  • Wipro – from Western India Palm Refined Oil Ltd Wipro Technologies. The company started as a modest Vanaspati and laundry soap producer and is now also an IT services giant.
  • Xerox – named from xerography, a word derived from the Greek xeros (dry) and graphos (writing). The company was founded as The Haloid Company in 1906, launched its first XeroX copier in 1949, and changed its name to Haloid Xerox in 1958.
  • Yahoo! – The word Yahoo was invented by Jonathan Swift and used in his book Gulliver's Travels. It represents a person who is repulsive in appearance and barely human. Yahoo! founders David Filo and Jerry Yang jokingly considered themselves yahoos. It's also an interjection sometimes associated with United States Southerners' and Westerners' expression of joy, as alluded to in commercials that end with someone singing the word "yahoo". It is also sometime jokingly referred to by its backronym, Yet Another Hierarchical Officious Oracle.

P.S:More notes will be updated soon for TCS IT Wiz ..pls check back..


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