Jony Ive Talks About His Design Process, Apple Secrecy, Steve Jobs, and More in New Interview

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Apple chief design officer Jony Ive recently sat down with model and actress Naomi Campbell for an interview, discussing topics like his design process, Steve Jobs, Apple secrecy, and more (via Vogue).

Campbell asked about Ive's personal involvement in the manufacturing process, bringing up a rumor she heard that he slept on factory floors when Apple was making the first iPhone. Ive didn't specifically confirm the rumor, but he mentioned he has "stayed for months" in the places that Apple makes its products. "I don't know how you can be an effective designer and not do that," he said.

Image via Vogue


On the topic of Apple's secrecy:
I don't really see it as being secretive - if I'm working on something and it's not finished, I don't want to show somebody! One of the defining things about the nature of ideas is just how fragile they are: when you're not sure whether some-thing is going to work, the idea is vulnerable. Part of protecting the idea is to be careful about who you show it to; premature criticism can shut something down that perhaps deserves more of a chance.
Ive also discussed former Apple CEO Steve Jobs, mentioning that the two "looked at the world in the same way," and that he appreciates and misses Jobs more as time goes on. When Campbell asked about lessons learned from Jobs, Ive said that Jobs' way of thinking has stuck with him: "There was an incredible liberty in the way he would think. He wouldn't obey rules that were perceived to be accepted wisdom, and he had an extraordinary optimism and enthusiasm."

Ive also stated that he thinks of Jobs and his values when hiring new people at Apple:
The main thing is how they see the world. Ultimately, Steve's legacy is a set of values and, I think, the belief in trying. Often the quietest voices are the easiest to overlook, but he was brilliant at listening as well as leading and speaking. A lot of com-munication is listening - not just listening to figure out what you want to say in response.
The Ive-Campbell interview has been published ahead of Ive's sponsorship of former fashion designer Azzedine Alaïa's work at London's Design Museum in May. Ive said that he used to watch Alaïa design and was in "utter awe": "It was incredible to see the way that he understood material, and the way he would be frustrated with material and so create new ones. And then these beautiful forms would emerge."

To read the full interview, visit Vogue's website.

Article Link: Jony Ive Talks About His Design Process, Apple Secrecy, Steve Jobs, and More in New Interview
 

2010mini

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Jun 19, 2013
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Careful Johnny..... Phones have been know to go flying at people’s heads from the hands of Ms. Campbell. :p
 

EdT

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I don’t think anyone believes that Apple or any other company should tell everyone about products under development.

But when the product has a release date then customer related details should be easily available. The HomePod was released and potential customers didn’t know what products and services would work with it, and they found out in dribblets of information released up to and even after the product was available. And the battery fix in IOS version 10 wouldn’t have caused the uproar that Apple is still having to deal with if they had announced WHAT the fix actually did. Some people still wouldn’t like it but at least you would have known WHY your phone was slow. Instead a 3rd party released tests showing what was happening and Apple looked bad.

Anything can be taken to extremes. You can let too much information out too soon so rivals can counter what you are doing. Or you can be Apple and try to keep things secret that they should be telling customers, if only to cover their behinds.
 

mtneer

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Sep 15, 2012
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Did Jony Ive himself setup that photo shoot? Looks like someone forgot to setup a decent background and then had to blowout the highlights to hide the parking lot in the background.
 

nt5672

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Jun 30, 2007
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What we need is less talk about how great it is and more greatness. I guess when you can do it, do it, when you can't do it, talk a lot about it and maybe people won't notice that you can't do it.
 

miniroll32

macrumors 65816
Mar 28, 2010
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Hate to sound like the token photography snob, but the highlights in that photo are blown out of whack. Amazed they couldn't do a better job.
 

mikecorp

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Mar 20, 2008
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I hope the future bring a device similar they have in Netflix Altered Carbon Series.
 

gugy

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Amazing how people are critical of everything. This is a Vogue interview and Apple advertises quite a bit on the magazine. So while it’s a piece to make Jony and Apple look good I would not expect a magazine like that to be critical of a client.
After all they are about fashion and not about tech.
 
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I7guy

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Nov 30, 2013
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Amazing how people are critical of everything. This is a Vogue interview and Apple advertises quite a bit on the magazine. So while it’s a piece to make Jony and Apple look good I would not expect a magazine like that to be critical of a client.
After all they are about fashion and not about tech.
And yet, I doubt those who are critical can do what he’s accomplished.
 

78Bandit

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Jun 13, 2009
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Jony has hit a plateau in his design philosophy. What was new, fresh, and revolutionary in its usability and simplicity starting with the iPod at the turn of the century is now looking quite dated. The overall design peaked with the original iPhone back in 2007. You had a couple of evolutions that stood out (the glass iPhone 4 and the monolithic slab of the iPhone 5, the flat design of iOS 7), but overall the design progress has been lackluster over the last decade.

Many articles about Jony focus on what he accomplished in the early days of the iPod and iPhone. There may be some about the "spaceship" design of Apple's campus, but there simply hasn't been much progress on Apple's actual product design in years. At this point Jony is like Tiger Woods. He has done a tremendous amount in his field, but his best days are likely well behind him. We hope for a comeback, yet when it really comes down to it all that gets talked about is accomplishments from years ago.
 

nvmls

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Mar 31, 2011
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Please Johny tell us more about the magic mouse bottom connector innovation, ergonomics, new keyboards, etc and how to sell them like toilet paper, we'd love to hear that!
 

PBG4 Dude

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Jul 6, 2007
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I hope the future bring a device similar they have in Netflix Altered Carbon Series.
Yeah cuz I really want my consciousness encased in technology that can be virally infected from orbit. :-/
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Take square, round corners = genius.
Yeah because eliminating the physical keyboard from cellphones was in everyone’s radar on 2007, amirite?