Soda Pop Wiki

Tab is a diet cola soft drink produced by The Coca-Cola Company, introduced in 1963. Originally marketed to consumers who want to keep 'tabs' on their weight.


Tab was introduced as a diet drink in 1963. Coca-Cola's marketing research department used its IBM 1401 computer to generate a list of over 185,000 four-letter words with one vowel, adding names suggested by the company's own staff; the list was stripped of any words deemed unpronounceable or too similar to existing trademarks. From a final list of about twenty names, "Tabb" was chosen, influenced by the possible play on words, and shortened to "Tab" during development, and designer Sid Dickens gave the name the capitalisation pattern ("TaB") used in the logo.Tab has been reformulated several times. It was initially sweetened with cyclamate, but in 1969 it was changed to saccharin. At the height of its popularity, the Tab name was briefly extended to other diet soft drinks, including Tab Lemon-Lime, Tab Black Cherry, Tab Ginger Ale, Tab Root Beer and Tab Orange. Tab's popularity began to decline in 1982, with the introduction of Diet Coke. A formula revision in 1984 blended saccharin with a small amount of aspartame; this is the formula that is currently marketed in North America. Caffeine Free Tab was introduced in the 1980s with little fanfare and disappeared soon afterward.

In 1993, Coca-Cola released Tab Clear in the U.S., Australia and UK. It was withdrawn after less than a year.

Tab Energy is an energy drink released in early 2006. Though sharing the brand name, Tab Energy does not share the same taste.