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Old May 6, 2013, 04:00 PM   #1
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Jony Ive's iOS 7 Influence Will Be More Than Skin Deep




Jony Ive has been in the spotlight since late last year when he took over Apple's Human Design interface team after senior vice president of iOS software Scott Forstall was ousted from Apple.

Ive is said to be heavily involved with iOS 7's rumored redesign, which will feature a flat design that removes many of the skeuomorphic elements featured in iOS 6. Much of the talk of iOS 7 has focused solely on the look of the new operating system, but a former Apple intern points out that Ive's influence will be featured heavily below the surface as well.

Ben Thompson, who currently works for Microsoft's Windows Apps team, was at Apple from June to August 2010. In a post on his blog Stratechery, Thompson shares a never before released quote from Ive that highlights his focus on a product's overall aesthetic rather than attributes that can be measured with numbers.
Quote:
But there are a lot of product attributes that don't have those sorts of measures. Product attributes that are more emotive and less tangible. But they're really important. There's a lot of stuff that's really important that you can't distill down to a number.

And I think one of the things with design is that when you look at an object you make many many decisions about it, not consciously, and I think one of the jobs of a designer is that you're very sensitive to trying to understand what goes on between seeing something and filling out your perception of it. You know we all can look at the same object, but we will all perceive it in a very unique way. It means something different to each of us. Part of the job of a designer is to try to understand what happens between physically seeing something and interpreting it.
As Thompson points out, Ive is in charge of Apple's Human Interface team rather than the visual design team, an important distinction that implies his role goes much deeper than offering a simple aesthetic overhaul. Design, hardware, and functionality are all inextricably linked in Ive's mind, suggesting that iOS 7's interface changes may be more important than its physical design changes.

Article Link: Jony Ive's iOS 7 Influence Will Be More Than Skin Deep
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:04 PM   #2
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I'm getting more and more excited to see what is going to be announced at WWDC...Ive has a really good eye at design. Hopefully his visions can be interpreted correctly by the iOS engineers.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:04 PM   #3
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After reading this article all I can think of is...

Iveception.

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Old May 6, 2013, 04:04 PM   #4
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another thread where everyone cries that getting rid of skeuomorphism is a bad idea.

those people will be the first to upgrade.

"OMG I DIDN'T THINK I WOULD LIKE IT, BUT THIS IS AMAZING"
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:05 PM   #5
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This entire post says a whole lot about nothing.

Quote:
But there are a lot of product attributes that don't have those sorts of measures. Product attributes that are more emotive and less tangible. But they're really important. There's a lot of stuff that's really important that you can't distill down to a number. And I think one of the things with design is that when you look at an object you make many many decisions about it, not consciously, and I think one of the jobs of a designer is that you're very sensitive to trying to understand what goes on between seeing something and filling out your perception of it. You know we all can look at the same object, but we will all perceive it in a very unique way. It means something different to each of us. Part of the job of a designer is to try to understand what happens between physically seeing something and interpreting it.
Unimpressive. Quit talking and get back to moving some product forward.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:07 PM   #6
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Oh yeah, the hype machine is slowly getting up to speed.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:08 PM   #7
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scott forstall was great at this already. skeuomorphism brought out a lot of emotion from iphone users.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:08 PM   #8
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Originally Posted by Vol7ron View Post
I'm getting more and more excited to see what is going to be announced at WWDC...Ive has a really good eye at hardware design. Hopefully his visions can be interpreted correctly by the iOS engineers.
I don't have the same level of confidence as you do. I fear the old adage, "Jack of all trades, master of none". If he spreads himself too thin, that could spell trouble for both the software and hardware.

There are some nice designs from other OEMs as well but the software they run (windows or android) is what brings down their experience. I have also experienced some really bad software from hardware OEMs like HP for example.

I am actually worried about the future of iOS. I hope that I am proven wrong but I'm not sure if Ive is the "vision" guy like Jobs was.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:11 PM   #9
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Anyone who understands how Jony views design would have already known this. So I know Jony was looking beyond visual aesthetic.

The only concern I have is time. He's only been in charge since late last year. To make significant overhauls/reimaginings of the operating system, its going to take more time than that. I think they'll phase these things out slowly. The visual design might be high on Jonys bucket list, as he probably finds the current visuals to be the most embarassing.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:12 PM   #10
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I trust Ive and I'm really excited about anything he does. The first thing you can definitely say about almost all Apple products is that they look, feel and work in a very pleasant way. There's of course what he says about what's beyond numbers and what you can describe with words. The iPhone is a flat rectangle with rounded corners, and so is the Samsung Galaxy S4. But for some reason - which one cannot describe in an ad and can't really explain in a simple way - the Samsung just seems like a boring machine while the iPhone has "something about it" that's just positive. It's not one thing, it's the way all the things work together and create that effect. It's THAT effect that most companies simply don't get (and Samsung never got). Some companies/people have it, some don't.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:15 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by aristotle View Post
I am actually worried about the future of iOS. I hope that I am proven wrong but I'm not sure if Ive is the "vision" guy like Jobs was.
We don't know that. We do know, however, that Ive is certainly the "taste" guy like Jobs was. No one else there has better taste than Jony. And Steve said many times himself that his success simply depended on "good taste."

Jony isn't going to be the visionary etc. He doesn't have to be. He simply needs to be the one with good taste, that rejects bad design, and further pursues good ideas.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:15 PM   #12
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Nothing to disagree with in the quote

Apple has long had a tendency with iOS to let the hard numbers (processor, processor performance and so on) take a back seat to what you can do with the device. The end result? Devices that don't have the highest performing components but which often outperform those that do.

It's a commendable approach, but one which often goes against the grain of how many users are conditioned to think these days. We see the same issue in digital photography, where there's a tendency to over measure the gear.

Last edited by Internaut; May 7, 2013 at 02:47 AM. Reason: Which vs that and a misplaced comma. Ho hum.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:19 PM   #13
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I think there's so much hype about iOS 7 being radically different, but from iOS 1 to 6, it's pretty much been the same thing.

Unless it has a much improved home screen, rather than just grid of icons, then the changes won't really matter that much. 3rd party applications won't be affected, and other than Phone, Mail, Safari and Messages, I don't use any of the default applications as part of my daily workflow.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:19 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by theheadguy View Post
This entire post says a whole lot about nothing.



Unimpressive. Quit talking and get back to moving some product forward.
You would fit in well at Microsoft or RIM/Blackberry. No so much at Apple.

It's that space that you and other people such as Steve Ballmer refer to as "nothing" that seems to be running circles around the competition. It's that nothingness that has been referred to as the magic in the devices that gets people in lines waiting to get their hands on a new iDevice.

I believe you though. There is nothing here for you.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:21 PM   #15
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This seems like just speculation from someone who doesn't know any more about iOS7 than you or I do. The title of this article is very misleading.

The features of iOS7 were probably largely in stone by the time the transition from Scott Forstall was made, so there is a limit as to how much influence Jonny will be able to have on iOS7. I suspect that Jonny will have a bigger influence on iOS8.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:22 PM   #16
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Originally Posted by brayhite View Post
scott forstall was great at this already. skeuomorphism brought out a lot of emotion from iphone users.
By "a lot of emotion" did you mean "I cry everytime I look at the awful iPad contacts app"?
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:22 PM   #17
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Originally Posted by theheadguy View Post
Quit talking and get back to...
That would make a lot more sense if this quote wasn't from a few years ago.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:30 PM   #18
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Originally Posted by brayhite View Post
scott forstall was great at this already. skeuomorphism brought out a lot of emotion from iphone users.
The problem with the skeuomorphism is that it works great when you've used the traditional non-electronic forms that are being emulated. You have entire generations though that have never used these analog counterparts, and to them these UIs make no sense. Reel to reel in the Podcast app being a great example. Those haven't been used for 30 years so a HUGE portion of the user base isn't making that connection. It was a cute thing back in the 80s and 90s to make an analog connection to the digital world, but the need for that passed a long time ago. It's time to just make a killer UI and I'm glad to see Apple moving in that direction.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:31 PM   #19
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:37 PM   #20
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Originally Posted by MacRumors View Post
Design, hardware, and functionality are all inextricably linked in Ive's mind, suggesting that iOS 7's interface changes may be more important than its physical design changes.
They're all inextricably linked together in the "user experience."
That's why Apple needs to control it all. Boom.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:42 PM   #21
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Originally Posted by brayhite View Post
scott forstall was great at this already. skeuomorphism brought out a lot of emotion from iphone users.
That's incredibly subjective. Forstall's idea of design was great, but he let things stagnate for WAY too long
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:43 PM   #22
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Whilst I share some of the concerns about time, I think the fact Ive only took over six or seven months ago, is not such a big problem.

Who really knows how long he's been cooking up ideas in his studio? It could have been those 'napkin drawings' that won him the job. For all we know, he may have already influenced some aspects of iOS design in the past, but due to Forstall being the type of person to take all the credit and none of the blame, it passed under the radar.
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Old May 6, 2013, 04:48 PM   #23
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After reading this article all I can think of is...
All the "talk" I've been witnessing. From Cook, outsides sources, et al. All the "Surprises in store for us"

Enough of this gushing over the golden boy, lavishing awards on him etc, just get to work and show us something in the calendar year 2013.

Awards? Sure I respect he earned and deserves them, but is that all Apple has to fill the rumor space with?

The self serving praise of the almighty "Apple" is beginning to wear thin.
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Old May 6, 2013, 05:23 PM   #24
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I wonder how many autocorrect "I've"s had to be retyped as "Ive" in these comments ...
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Old May 6, 2013, 05:34 PM   #25
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I think the most important thing is touch response time and UI snappiness.

It should always be a priority.

Also brightness and wifi toggle in an even more accesible way. (should have been on the pull-down notification center like was rumored)

Maybe some added efficiency in menus and random places.

Skeumorphism never bothered me as long it was married with maximum practicality.

It was more important in the past than now though, since the concept of iOS and Apple has matured past trying to sell us on extra detailed gimmicks. We shouldnt take away from the idea that skeumorphism is part of the sales image that tells us that what is under the hood is well designed without us having to realize it on our own. It says: a lot of work went into this to make it user friendly. It communicated something. Now, we dont need that communicated anymore, but it was never a terrible thing.
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