Jonathan Ive : Apple competitors have completely the wrong goals

Discussion in 'Apple, Inc and Tech Industry' started by HappyCamperNS, Jun 3, 2012.

  1. HappyCamperNS, Jun 3, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2012

    HappyCamperNS macrumors newbie

    May 29, 2012
    I saw this article today of an interview with the person in charge of product design at Apple. It was an interesting read and I could agree with certain points he made about android manufacturers not really making better products, just trying to be different as well as having "scant regard for people who use the product".

    What do you guys think?
  2. FlatlinerG macrumors 6502a


    Dec 21, 2011
    Ontario, Canada
    Sounds about right to me. And if Ives keeps designing everything, I'll keep buying.
  3. b166er macrumors 68020


    Apr 17, 2010
    Aside from his great eye for design, Ive really seems like a smart dude. He seems to have actual passion for his work which is something that most people sadly never will have. He understands his customer base.

    I agree with him 100% Much of the competition relies on gimmicks. How many gimicky features have we seen come and go just in the past two years or so? Phones with projectors, 3D cameras, a built in kickstand!?

    Ive understands and respects simplicity, and Apple is lucky to have him. Any company would be.
  4. Azzin macrumors 601


    Jun 23, 2010
    London, England.
  5. JoeG4 macrumors 68030


    Jan 11, 2002
    Bay Area, Ca.
    Ok, Jonathan Ive takes part in designing some of the most commercially successful products ever, I get that! However, I think his comment about other designers having no regard for the people using their comment is uncalled for, unjustified, and he doesn't have a leg to stand on when making such a comment.

    Ive has shown time and time again that he doesn't care about ergonomics (and sometimes basic functionality) to make a good looking product. There are a few exceptions to that - the MacBook power bricks are the best power brick design I've ever seen a computer manufacturer create and nobody has even tried to top those. Hiding the vent on the laptops under the hinge? Great idea - it works so much better than the side vent most cookie cutter laptops have.

    What about how the routers and time capsules don't have enough ventilation and tend to overheat? Is that a considerate design? Or the piece of crap plastic MacBooks.. or every mouse Apple has made since 1997? How about the Titanium powerbooks?

    I think he has a point about iPhone competitors being cheaply made, rushed designs because every Samsung has 5 or 6 versions to appease the mobile manufacturers with the "unique version" they desire, but even then there's almost always a consideration taken that Ive himself would NEVER bother doing in the name of design. Phones designed to be held in the hand, sat on a table to watch movies, have their batteries replaced, type on with hardware keyboards, etc. Apple makes one iPhone for everyone and doesn't give a damn what you use it for. That doesn't excuse the fact that most smartphones are cheap pieces of junk that probably won't last the duration of a 2 year contract (but that's been a problem with cellphones for years)
  6. applefanDrew macrumors 65816

    Jul 17, 2010
    Which is why the new iPhone won't be a big "revolutionary" change. They have a great design already. They can make it better but there's no need to change everything for the sake of change. Which seems to be what most on here want.
  7. nuckinfutz macrumors 603


    Jul 3, 2002
    Middle Earth
    He's got a point.

    Selling users on LTE phones with battery that only last 4-5 hours is in no way looking out for them.

    What i've found is that companies that offer highly integrated software and hardware solutions tend to be more realistic about what they market to people.

    While those that are selling a heavily licensed software OS tend to do just what Ive has said and focus things that really don't matter.

    "Hey this has Beats audio in it for great sound!"


  8. Dmunjal macrumors 65816

    Jun 20, 2010
    Good design is great. But unless you're buying a painting or some other work of art, a phone is a tool and form should follow function not the other way around. The IP4 is beautiful but not as ergonomic as other phones. That can be said about a lot of Ive's designs.
  9. Artimus12 macrumors 6502a


    Nov 13, 2011
    I kind of hear what you're saying with regards to customer focus, but if I wanted a push button keyboard I'd buy a Blackberry, or one of the many clones available. I don't want a keyboard\pad that gums up with food every time I stop to eat a sandwich! I don't want to have to toothpick my phone clean every evening. I don't want my battery cover falling off every time I chuck the phone on the tabletop. Apple sometimes go with features that benefit the buyer in ways we don't realise we prefer until one day we realise we've been doing this thing without even thinking about it ...and we can't do that until somebody hands a phone over to us.

    I'm no fanboy, but Apple seem to have their finger on our pulse more so than any other manufacturer I can think of. SJ was right when he said 'they don't know what they want'! It's true because we're not designers or engineers, so it's not our job to think of what would make the optimum design\experience for a mobile phone. We pay so much for their products because they get it right more often than not ..and it's not the aesthetics - although good looks do go a very long way in the decision making process of buyers - so much as the whole user experience (including customer service) that keeps buyers loyal to the brand.

    I think Ive is right, committees & executives have no place deciding what a phone should & shouldn't do, or how short its lifespan should be, because ultimately it's the customer that'll decide a product's fate. The biggest downfall of most other manufacturers is poor after-sales customer support. The common attitude seems to be 'we already have your money, now get lost'.

    ...I'm looking at you LG, Sony et al...

    any buyer that feels this way then says: Okay, I will ..I'll never buy your products again and neither will my friends when they hear my tale of woe.
  10. Vegastouch, Jun 3, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2012

    Vegastouch macrumors 603


    Jul 12, 2008
    Las Vegas, NV
    Apple products are great. I love their computers, laptops..everything they make really. Their iMac screens/computers are phenominal and i would like to have one and will someday. I like their phones. They look good, they work well.

    When he says competitors are doing something different, he is right. When he says theyare doing something that appears new, he is right as far as phones go. Is it better? Sure it is better if those things are appealing to you and work better for you. If they give you more options than Apple does and people want those options.....isnt that better?

    If in fact Apple would add more widgets and more customization and many of the things Android does, it would be better than it is now. So, bottom line is whats better is in the hands of the user and many here wish their iPhone could do what Androids do and if they could, then posters here would say it is the best device ever made and they are geniuses.

    Still a nice phone without them but more is better and just adding simple things like MMS and copy and paste and then Siri made the masses happier, did it not?

    Hec give it a much better Navigation that dont cost and a bigger screen and even happier. I think iPhone users would be tickled to death to have at least two options. Maybe a bigger screen addition and the same ol 3.5" screen. Tell me that wouldnt be great! Who wouldnt want options?

    Saying others make them cheap is a cheap shot. Id rather have a plastic back i can swap out a battery and take out and expand my micro card memory than have a glass back that is brittle. It looks good but it is glass!!! Glass shatters.
  11. sulpfiction macrumors 68030


    Aug 16, 2011
    Philadelphia Area
    If that's not the definition of "resting on ur laurels", I don't know what is. Just because u designed something that looked great, doesn't mean u have to beat it to death with every iteration for years and years. The current iPhone is beautiful. No denying it. Its the most beautiful cell phone ever. But im tired of looking at it. I'm ready to see his next beautiful design. Its called evolution. And vertically stretching the iPhone 4 and replacing the back is not what I envision as a evolutionary, revolutionary design change. And that's what we should be expecting. Mark my words...Everyone is going to be shocked when the new iPhone drops. All this crap u have been seeing lately is 100% false. Bet the house on it.
  12. b166er macrumors 68020


    Apr 17, 2010
    The first time I saw the aluminum unibody MBP's I thought they looked like something you would see in a movie, not an actual product you could go buy.

    That's the kind of impact a good design can have on me, and Ive has done that to me more than once.
  13. colour, Jun 3, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2012

    colour macrumors regular

    Mar 13, 2009
    ............. really

    How about when apple fixes their prices ? Apple creates products which cost roughly 30% of what they retail for and then to add to the insult that price does not drop until a new product replaces it..... so you pay a premium for 1 year old technology.

    Yeah sure, your company has all the right intentions, sure you make well designed products but you charge a ridiculous premium .... that doesn't drop ? :confused: other companies design great products too but they play by the rules. And its worth noting that apples products are innovative, other companies innovate too ??? I'm sick of hearing how apple "innovates" .... its more like they buy out ideas and companies. And apple products have their problems too they aren't clean on those records, apple has had a few design flaws on multiple products, SUCH AS: yellowing palm rests, cracking palm rests, cracked keyboard keys, over heating, sub par battery performances, hardware failures/faults, and poorly designed products yes apple has made a few.

    Apple has made some nice products, especially during a time where aesthetics and design was looked over and not focused on as much as apple did. But over the past few years that has changed, technology and these big companies are more design conscious and have caught up to apple. Get of your fanboy chair and look at the nokia Lumia 900, Dell Adamo, Sony and SE made a few interesting designs in their phones, HTC ONE S.

    I like Ive but that's because I like where he get's his inspiration from, his design ethos is heavily influenced from some of the best modernist designers and architects. It was a beautiful partnership between Jobs and Ive, unlike others at the time they focused on design more so than how big, powerful, flashy or new they could make the product. It was ahead of it's time, I haven't seen an outstanding apple product for since the iphone 4 (June 24, 2010) lets see what they have spent 24 months revolutionizing or inventing that in this industry, because we have seen some great products and bold risks taken by nokia, htc, samsung, lg, sony and hawaii which have been interesting.

    It's subjective yes, but one must take of their apple glasses (or google's) and appreciate well designed things regardless of their brands. Let's forget about the really exclusive high end brands (B&O, Lecia ect) because I wouldn't say apple even fits into that category any more as they have switched to a consumer market. If you can't appreciate well designed products and look past brands It says something about your sense of individuality and appreciation for good design.
  14. bniu macrumors 6502a

    Mar 21, 2010
    Apple: We focus on scoring more points than the other team

    Competitors: We focus on hitting more home runs, getting more hits, and beating our competitors in every stat department you can find!
  15. applefanDrew, Jun 3, 2012
    Last edited: Jun 3, 2012

    applefanDrew macrumors 65816

    Jul 17, 2010

    it's not that you never change the design. You change it IF the new design creates a better product. Not just for the sake of "Hey, it looks different."
  16. kdarling macrumors P6


    Jun 9, 2007
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    Depends on the user, of course.

    A lot of people want/need the speed... and don't need "looking out for" like they're children.

    It's no different than when 3G first came out. Or WiFi. Or Bluetooth. All can suck power, but their benefits to many people outweigh that.
  17. eastercat macrumors 68040


    Mar 3, 2008
    If a company wants to sell me a phone that gets reasonable battery life, I don't consider that paternalistic. For me, that company actually cares about its customers by wanting to give it a better mobile experience.
    Most consumers of phones don't exhaustively read the reviews. They see advertising highlights that tout speed benefits, screen size, etc. Unless they pay attention, battery life isn't going to be foremost on their mind.
    Most people figure that decent battery life is a gimme. When it doesn't have it, they think the phone is a POS and don't look to other factors like 4G. It isn't likely to cross their minds the company is treating its customers like an adult.
    If a company can't balance the need for the latest speed with reasonable battery, that's a company that treats its customers like a POS. That doesn't elevate the company's products in the eyes of this customer.
  18. Sedrick macrumors 68030


    Nov 10, 2010
    This is what I'm waiting on as well. Let them come out at the keynote with a vertically stretched iPhone and say "This is what the biggest company on the planet has been working on for two years!".
  19. smoledman macrumors 68000

    Oct 17, 2011
    Give Ive credit. With the iPhone 4 and Macbook Air, he's created designs that are good for 5-7 years without any tweaking required. Can you imagine how much R&D is saved by better designs?

    But honestly most people never look at specs - they simply bought an iPhone because it was peer pressure or it looks cool.
  20. boss.king macrumors 68040


    Apr 8, 2009
    Um... They tweak the iPhone design every year, so that doesn't seem accurate. Also, I would argue that the current design is pretty flawed with its glass back.

    I respect Ive and I think he's one of the better designers around today, but he doesn't always get it right either. As someone has already pointed out, he has yet to make a comfortable mouse. The iMac design seems to have bad heat dissapation. The current iPod nano is crap. He goes for beauty over function almost every time, which I would say is quite similar to the very thing he criticizes is the article.
  21. smoledman macrumors 68000

    Oct 17, 2011
    Current Microsoft & Logitech mice design put Ive's to shame. In fact he's pretty hypocritical, the Magic Mouse is different for difference's sake rather then being GOOD.
  22. GoCubsGo macrumors Nehalem


    Feb 19, 2005
    I couldn't agree with you more. The Magic Mouse is not the best mouse to use for everyone and especially not all day. It is not ergonomic to say the least.
  23. smoledman macrumors 68000

    Oct 17, 2011
    But in the end Ive is mostly responsible for multi-billion profits that Apple is raking in.

    I give it 1/3 each to Jobs/Ive/Cook for Apple's current success.
  24. boss.king macrumors 68040


    Apr 8, 2009
    what about Scott Forstall? Or the countless other employees without whom Apple would not function properly. Ive and Cook are good at what they do but without help they wouldn't be anywhere.
  25. kdarling macrumors P6


    Jun 9, 2007
    First university coding class = 47 years ago
    I think a lot of that comes from Ive's long association with Steve Jobs, who did not worry too much about ergonomic or heat or technical problems caused by case (or antenna) designs as long as they looked good.

    Not to mention the iPhone and iPad requiring built-in heat warnings and shutdown.

    Ive makes pretty items, but not always ergonomic nor designed for use outside of mild or cooler climates. Very British, actually. Reminds me of the older Jags I owned ;)

Share This Page