Can hardware design guru Jony Ive transform Apple’s software design in iOS 7?

Jonathan Ive has embarked on a sweeping software overhaul that leaves the company at risk of falling behind on a new version of the operating system that runs iPhones and iPads, people with knowledge of the matter said.

Adam Satariano reports on Apple’s upcoming iOS 7 on Bloomberg Television’s “Bloomberg West.”

Direct link to video here.

Related articles:
Jony Ive, iOS 7, and what Apple learned from MySpace – May 2, 2013
Apple in deadline crunch mode for WWDC as Jony Ive’s team works on ‘deForstallization’ of iOS 7 – May 1, 2013
Apple’s Jony Ive seen risking iOS 7 delay on sweeping software overhaul; Mac team enlisted to help – May 1, 2013
Jony Ive preps ‘very, very flat,’ potentially unsettling UI for Apple’s new iOS 7 – April 29, 2013
Usage logs begin reporting hits from new Apple iPhone hardware and iOS 7 – April 15, 2013
Jony Ive to usher in big changes in iOS 7 with system-wide UI overhaul – April 3, 2013


  1. I, for one, love the skeuomorphic design of calendar, reminders and notes in iOS 6. The only exception to that would be the podcast app which was a little difficult to understand as the reel to reel tape analogy made no sense to me. I mean what is a reel to reel tape anyway.

    Having said that, I want my calendar to look like a real life representation of a calendar with 3-D shading and all and not some 2-D projection on a white space.

    I think Steve Jobs understood that you needed to humanise onscreen objects which is why the trash bin in OS X looks like a trash bin in real life. You can relate the use of the OS to real life experience with everyday objects which brings the OS closer to a human-like level rather than being a remote electronic object that bears no relationship to objects in the real world.

      1. Of course it is elegant if done right, there are decades of silhouetted UI graphics created at Apple.

        Flat graphics exist in OSX now – its been complained about many times… Jony main objective is to have consistency of appearance across both OSes.

        Yet the elegance of Flat monotones does not better the UI – yet may elude to in perception of a higher valued product.

        However, if done right. Windows Titles in Metro feels bad yet is very flat also. And its UI sucks.

        iOS isn’t much of a UI. It could not be more direct or simple.

        1. Rather than flattening its appearance I would prefer it be matured to work more consistently and elegantly especially interaction between apps which is presently quite clunky and please can we actually have a usable screen grab and efficient, flexible and practical inbuilt notes app.

    1. And a metal, expensive, high-end trash bin at that – one with style and culture… yes humanizing the relationship to better recognize the users experience with that of daily physical objects.

      The craze of Adobe Flash brought a rebirth of 70’s style graphics – most were FLAT vectors and homogeneous colours. Here it is 2013 and Jony wants to lead the world back into the 70s and Flash inspired graphics. Help.
      The fashion is not the problem.

      The perception of quality doesn’t require minimalism and simplification. It’s refinements and consistency that are important… effecting functionality.

    2. Your points are well taken, but still, what’s real-life about the “Find My Friends” app? A theme of burnished and stitched leather stamped with AIGA symbols? Seriously? Does Davy Crockett work at Apple?

      1. The leather stitching I understand was inspired by the leather stitching found in the interior of Steve Job’s private jet. I actually don’t mind, one way or the other, of the way the Find my Friends icon looks. I’m pretty neutral towards it – it neither inspires hate nor love towards it. As far as I’m concerned it just works and does what it’s intended to do which is help you locate your friends.

        I suppose you could look at it from a view that takes on board the analogy that you’re on board Steve Job’s private jet (with the leather stitchings) which is flying over the landscape helping you look for your friend on the rolling map. That’s about as close as I can get as to why it looks the way it does.

        I don’t hate Scott Forstall. I think he’s done a wonderful job and his only misstep, if you can call it that, was in not apologising for Maps which I can understand given that the Maps issue was overblown.

      2. Possibly, your education through no fault of your own, was deficient in teaching U.S. history: Age 49, David Crockett died fighting at the Alamo on the morning of March 6, 1836. 😉

        Tanned leather has a purpose dating back to the beginning of mankind living in caves and cognizant not everyone in the vocal minority agrees.

        The majority of speculative upcoming iOS7 design articles consistently dismiss ‘stitched leather’ followed by disdain for bookshelves made out of wood, et al.


        1. Come on, everyone knows that. I was simply goading BLN, in a playful manner, of course (any other manner is a signal for dismemberment). 😉

      3. “Find My Friends” art was definitely a visual miss for sure. But the designs that do relate well to the subject do help create a beautiful, casual, welcoming look that has always been the main trait of Mac’s OS. I hope Johnny keeps a bit of that going. It’s the combo of the visually comfortable and friendly OS plus the stark minimalist hardware that make a combo that is hard to beat.

    3. Spot on, BLN!

      Agree totally and also love the rich look that separates Apple apart from the competition: Detailed everyday representational illustrations that young and old alike understand.

      More important than winning art and media acclaim is communication. We’re not entering an abstract art competition to become the latest and coolest on the cover of ARTnews (subscriber here).

      Understand the present look may not please everyone, but as you pointed out — it just works for the silent majority.

  2. Always anxious to paint Apple in any possible negative light just to get the web clicks. “Gee they MIGHT be late, gee they MIGHT not sell enuff, gee their popularity MAY be shrinking, gee their numbers sold MIGHT be substantially lower, gee they don’t APPEAR to be innovating anymore,” etc., etc., etc.. And then… BOOM!

  3. Always remember and never forget that the opposite of gee is haw.

    If I had my team of horses with me I’d do a demonstration for you. My lead horse knows the difference between left and right.

  4. If iOS7 is just an eye-candy make over then who cares when it ships. It’s cool functionality I want to see. I want iOS7 to do more than a jail broken unit.

    1. Here. Here.
      I would much rather they add what is needed to fix what is broken or to enhance what is lacking than to change the GUI. I really don’t want the decreased productivity that surely comes with most any changes, but especially unless those changes are very meaningful and not another beta OS like Lion was.

  5. If you look at the Apple WWDC + Apple’s website opening pages, they are giving us a clue as to what the new, flat colorful iOS UI will look like in the near future. See the iPad photo on main page + iPhone photo on main page. They show very flat, graphic, colorful images on their screens from the iOS Apps installed… Is this the future of iOS UI?

  6. Who cares if the ship date is longer. I’d rather have the best product they can produce when they are ready to release it. No repeat of the Maps fiasco please. Take your time Johnny!

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