Apple’s Mac mini, iPod shuffle take Gold in 2005 Industrial Design Excellence Awards

The Apple Mac mini and iPod shuffle has been awarded Gold in the 2005 Industrial Design Excellence Awards from the Industrial Designers of America in the computer equipment and computer product categories respectively. The Industrial Design Excellence Awards are dedicated to fostering business and public understanding of the importance of industrial design excellence to the quality of life and the economy. Apple’s Airport Express also took Silver in the Computer Equipment category.

The Mac mini is the most affordable and compact computer offering from Apple ever. It weighs only 2.9 pounds and sits just two-inches high. A retail price starting at $499 makes the Mac mini attractive to an entirely new segment of computer users. However, its compact form and affordable price doesn’t sacrifice power. Inside, the machine boasts a PowerPC G4 processor, slot-load combo DVD-CDRW drive, up to 80 gig hard drive, a speaker and is configurable with Airport Extreme and Bluetooth wireless communications.

It is a BYODKM (Bring Your Own Display, Keyboard and Mouse) system, so you can use the peripherals you already have or choose any combination of new devices. The design’s streamlined aesthetics perfectly complement Apple’s existing product line. Sales have been strong. First quarter results exceeded company expectations by 15 percent.

“In the last century, Braun led the design world by doing what it preached resulting in beautiful Eurostyle appliances in kitchens across America. Today Apple is the leader, continuing to hammer away at both bad design and fluffy design. Their design philosophy is getting close the ultimate “less is more.” The only decoration is the logo – valid only because it stands (subtly) for such good design. The color, the shape, the materials all whisper perfection so loudly that there is no room for competition. -Tucker Viemeister, FIDSA, President, Springtime-USA

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The iPod Shuffle is the latest in Apple’s family of digital music players. It is based on the iPod’s pioneering and widely-used shuffle feature, which randomly selects songs from the user’s music library or playlists. However, at any time with the flip of a switch users can choose to listen to their music in order rather than shuffled.

The iPod shuffle is smaller and lighter than a pack of gum and comes with its own lanyard so it’s ready to wear right out of the box. The circular, ergonomic controls and one-click slider make it simple to operate without looking and are just as intuitive as the controls on the iPod that everyone has come to love. Sales continue to exceed company predictions.

“The iPod Shuffle’s simplicity comes from drastically narrowing our choices (or making them for us). We get to give up the responsibility of having to navigate and choose and with that comes freedom and lightness. Calm.” -Pierre-Yves Panis, I/IDSA, Design Manager, Legrand

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The Airport Express is the world’s first palm-size wireless base station. The small, lightweight and compact device brings the Internet to every room in your house, all without cables. It also allows you to print wirelessly and has the ability to stream iTunes music to any room in the house. It is compact enough that you can take it with you to create a wireless network on the go. An internal universal AC adapter allows you to plug the Airport Express directly into a wall without extra cables or a power supply. With its modular design, a power cord can be quickly added and plugs can be easily changed for worldwide compatibility.

Full article here.


  1. Winston,

    “Connect. Print. Listen. Wirelessly.

    AirPort Express with AirTunes is an incredible wireless product that allows you to play iTunes music over your wireless network to your home stereo or powered speakers. It also allows you to share both a broadband Internet connection for up to 10 users and a USB printer.” –

    WELL worth the price. If you can show me another unit that will perform as seamlessly and give me all the features at a comparible price, I would gladly buy it… even if it’s not made by Apple.

  2. A justly deserved award! The AirPort Express really is an excellent combination of form and function. It it’s functions are unique!

    The AirPort Express is great! I bought it because it was (still is?) less expensive than any other wireless print server out there. Nothing like sitting in the living room with my laptop and having something print in the den.

    I also use it when I’m at customer sites – just plug it into their wired network and I get wireless access to their network and the Internet. The compact size is great! For those of you who haven’t seem one, they are essentially the same dimensions as the iBook/PowerBook transformer. Same AC power connector, though the AirPort Express does not come with a power cord, just the wall mount plug. Like the *Book transformer, it is removable so you presumably can get the correct plug for international use. And the AirPort Express even looks like the transformer – the same simple white Apple design.

    AirTunes to me were just gilding on the lily – I don’t use iTunes much. If you do, you will love that feature too, especially if you iTunes with your *Book, or your desktop is in one room and you want to listen in another.

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