Why Apple’s iOS 7 is a masterpiece of design

“My first impression on seeing iOS 7 on my iPhone was: What is this, a My Little Pony theme?” Mike Elgan writes for Cult of Mac. “But after scrutinizing, analyzing, deconstructing and living with the new version, I’m ready to declare iOS 7 an unambiguous masterpiece, a stroke of genius, really.”

“The old interface had a lot of arbitrariness, and the new one has very little,” Elgan writes. “In addition to being aesthetically compatible, the new OS contrasts colorwise. The hardware is: mimimum color (black or white and metal all over). The software is: maximum color. The overall effect of this contrast is striking and appealing.”

Elgan writes, “Almost every user interaction with iOS 7 triggers an instant and smooth reaction by the interface, and a high-performance one that makes sense rather than being a cheap gimmick… Apple has taken the best aspect of the iOS interface — the reactive physics — and has taken it to a whole new thrilling level… the overall design is a masterpiece of style, function and market differentiation. It’s a great thing for Apple, and a great thing for users. The future for Apple’s mobile interface looks very bright indeed.”

Read more in the full article here.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Dan K.” for the heads up.]


    1. Sorry, not this time.

      The look is me-too design inspired from Windows, Android and Blackberry.

      ” … the overall design is a masterpiece of style, function and market differentiation. It’s a great thing for Apple, and a great thing for users.”

      What are you smoking?

      Under the hood is a different story.

            1. “But that Helvetica font comes right from Google’s practice.” That has to be a quote from an un informed Android fanboi.

              Apple has been using Helvetica longer than Google has existed.

          1. Everybody uses HELLvelica or Ariel its readability is legendary and it avoids justification problems like a champ but there are lots of sub genres in that font family and theres the rub picking which one. the part about no cheap gimmicks is the one i like why would you wand a small picture of your face concentrating on getting the shot in the corner of a movie clip you were making like the new blackberry can do that is a gimmick aimed at narcissists.

          2. … associate Helvetica with Google, rather than with Apple, is because your experience with computers is mostly recent – since the advent of Google. Most computers/web sites have used sans serif fonts since I started – back in 1968. You started with a Windows machine, perhaps? Which used a cruder sans serif font? While Google was a bit tidier?

          3. The Helvetica font was designed in 1957. Helvetica Neue in 1983. Macs had Helvetica fonts when the founders of Google (both born in 1973) were still in high school in the 80s. Google was founded in 1998.

          4. Helvetica is one of the most common fonts in the world. It’s a work-horse, a standard san-serif that most other fonts try to imitate or spawn a variant of style off of. It’s popularity stems from the fact that it goes with just about everything. It’s the designer’s “little black dress.”

        1. @x
          Thanks SO much for your insightful contribution. Your thinking is like a laser, cutting to the heart of the matter, illuminating the issues like a veritable ray of wisdom. A great addition to the discussion.

      1. Of course. Like their MacBook is a me-too Windows Laptop, MacMini a me-too Dell mini desktop, etc. And like you are a me-too writer. What are you smoking? Under the hood is a different story.

      2. All you fanboys shut the fuck up. Read this link and then finally you will all just shut up. There is so much copying Apple did with iOS 7 it’s bullshit. They copied tons of things from others: blatant rip offs. Complete rip offs. They fused a bunch of shit together from Android, Windows Phone, and BlackBerry. It’s starting to make sense the idea of it was design by committee. Or should I say a shit bag full of design blobs.

        Read it and weep you pathetic worshippers of a fruit:


        1. sfgh. That article was put together by a moron. He doesn’t even have the decades right. Much of the stuff in iOS comes from OS X. Safari tabs he claimed came from Google Chrome. BS. It was in Safari years before chrome. The multitasking task switcher in WebOS looks nothing like Apple’s iOS. Mail in iOS looks like Mail in OS X and looks almost the same as the original over a decade ago…long before there even was a Google Gmail or Mailbox….who both copied Apple’s original Mail. Apple’s Calendar in iOS looks like OS X Calendar has for as long as I can remember. That whole article was 100% crap written by some a-hole that probably never laid his hands on an Apple product. If you’re going to trash Apple’s designs, at least find one that has even one accurate item in it. And the people that just blindly read crap like that and believe it are even more ignorant than the guy who wrote that trash. It’s worse than a political ad.

          1. pgoodwin1:

            You deny facts. You deny reality. Like people deny the holocaust. You are delusional.

            It is clear you have NEVER used iOS 7 you idiot. The tabs in Safari are a roldadex in iOS 7. Apple clearly copied it from Chrome it is undeniable. And this goes so far as being defined as a user interaction you fucking moron. There’s no getting out of it.

            And the the multitasking task switcher in WebOS DOES IN FACT LOOK AND BEHAVE just like Apple’s iOS 7.

            Facts, not delusions. FACTS you fucking idiot.

            Fact: in WebOS, multi-tasking is achieved by scrubbing cards horizontally. Closing Apps or windows is achieved by swiping a card up.

            Fact: in iOS 7, multi-tasking is achieved by scrubbing cards horizontally. Closing Apps or windows is achieved by swiping a card up.

            Fact: Apple hired the person in charge of WebOS’s notifications last year.

            So just shut the fuck up and stop trolling. That article is 100% legitimate and based on facts. Your post is nothing based in reality but delusion.

            Apple is a copycat.

            1. To MDN
              re sfgh

              Can we please have a few fucking rules here for fucksake! Fuck!!!!

              – Must be 8 years old to post
              – No swearing
              – No personal insults

              To sfgh
              Go fuck yourself you poisonous little fuck.

              To MDN again
              Have I gone over the fuck limit yet?

            2. Hi Seamus:

              This is the difference between me and you. I post facts and I get people’s attention. You post nothing but personal attacks. Nothing based in reality. You’re not saying anything at all.

              The other difference is I’m actually here to help you fucking people. I want you to stop worshipping something that is a pile of greedy shit and that doesn’t care about you and I want you all to get out and I want you to all do something. Get together and build the next best solar panel. Get together and make an electric car. Something.

              But stop worshipping this company. They steal, lie, copy, and cheat like every other company. And they’re getting more and more arrogant with those stupid promo videos explaining to people what design is, etc.

            3. @sfgh
              “You post nothing but personal attacks.”
              I tried being rational and respectful with you. Didn’t change your river of poison. So, yeh, I’ll just insult you now. Please note – I never insult anyone merely because they have a different opinion than me. I insult only a very few people on here, such as yourself, because you incessantly insult everyone.

              You are a deluded, rage-aholic fool.
              1. Nobody here wants your “help”.
              2. You will never have any positive influence with anyone, because of your incessant name-calling and insults.
              3. You will never have any influence because of your supreme arrogance. You NEVER post anything like “in my opinion”, “have you considered”, “I think another way to look at that is…” NOBODY wants to listen to someone who thinks they’re God.

              “Get together and build the next best solar panel.”
              Ahem! Back at ya.
              Try that yourself.
              Or spend the rest of your life, as I suggested, watching Jersey Shore.
              But stop the incessant spewing of insult. Just about everyone here thinks you are a total jerk. YOU – WILL – NEVER – HAVE – ANY – INFLUENCE.

            4. Seamus:

              Shut up. I don’t give a shit what you or anyone else thinks of me personally. I don’t care if I’m the only one in the world who thinks as I do. I think in facts. Facts.

              I base my comments on facts. You base your comments on emotional, subjective drivel.

              Apple is a copycat of the worst order. They sued Samsung over stuff that’s based on design and user interaction.

              The audacity they have to copy WebOS, Windows Phone with the look and feel of iOS, Chrome with cards, and many other things.

              Hypocritical son of a bitches.

              And you’re posts are useless. You delusional twit.

            5. So if Apple copies something it’s a mortal sin, but when Samsung or Palm or Google copy something there’s nothing wrong with it?


              Your trolling bores me, sfgh.

            6. jbsdmn:

              This is how twisted you are. I NEVER, EVER said it was ok to copy. That’s how stupid you are.

              No, it’s not ok. Somebody should sue Apple here. Fuck are they arrogant. All that bullshit about values that Tim Cook vomited up during the Samsung trial. And here they are copying EVERYONE!

              Look, I like iOS 7, some parts at least. I’m running it. And I’m running Mavericks. But my attitude toward Apple has drastically changed since Steve died. I’m at a point where a brand I once loved and trusted… I just don’t anymore. I now really like their products. But there’s a lot wrong with Apple. They lie, steal, and cheat like everyone else. And now that they’re copying, I’ve lost respect for them. Who wouldn’t?

              You know the extent that they go to in their greed and control? They sued Samsung over a scroll bar elastic band! Yet they rip off things like an entire framework and user interactions for multi-tasking. If anyone, ANYONE, copied Apple’s multi-tasking, they’d sue their ass off. And all of you would be screaming “COPYCAT! Sue them Apple!”

              They’re idiots are so are fanboys.

            7. Moron? Rolodex-like behavior was in HyperCard on a Mac in 1987. So did Google’s Chrome designers copy that? Probably no more than Apple copied it’s multitasking interface from Chrome. And iOS mobile Safari has had sideways swiping for web pages since it was introduced. Sideways scrubbing on a mobile device to get you to a different object was brought to the masses with iOS. Having sideways scrubbing for multitasking to get you from one object in one app to another object in another app is a logical extension of the current art in mobile computing, so it’s no invention, and likely not even patentable. If there is a patent on it, it probably preceded iOS and Chrome and both companies would have to pay licensing fees for it.so your “Facts” are just your own personal delusions, apparently brought on by a lack of any meaningful historical knowledge of the computing industry. If you want to claim someone copied something from someone, go figure out who really came up with it in the first place before you start telling us Apple copied it from someone. You think Google invented swiping for multitasking? Now that’s moronic. Apple is the industry leader in human interface via gesturing on our devices. So give me a break. When we all sit down and learn iOS 7, what it is, and what it does, again we’ll find that Apple has brought us more advanced control, smoother, stable and more logical operation, and more productive interfaces to the masses than any other company does. You don’t have to use it, or buy it. You also dont have to go on and on ad nauseum about Apple this and Apple that. Apple doesn’t make the best of everything. They make the best of a “whole” thing. The hardware, the software, the UI, the look, the feel, the performance, the materials, the product life, the battery life, the support. You put it all together, and there’s simply no equal. I’m sorry you don’t like that and it drives you crazy.

              You know what’s even dumber than a moron? An idiot. Go look it up in Merriam-Webster. Here’s some Synonyms: airhead, birdbrain, blockhead, bonehead, bubblehead, chowderhead, chucklehead, clodpoll (or clodpole), clot [British], cluck, clunk, cretin, cuddy (or cuddie) [British dialect], deadhead, dim bulb [slang], dimwit, dip, dodo, dolt, donkey, doofus [slang], dope, dork [slang], dullard, dumbbell, dumbhead, dum-dum, dummkopf, dummy, dunce, dunderhead, fathead, gander, golem, goof, goon, half-wit, hammerhead, hardhead, ignoramus, imbecile, jackass, know-nothing, knucklehead, lamebrain, loggerhead [chiefly dialect], loon, lump, lunkhead, meathead, mome [archaic], moron, mug [chiefly British], mutt, natural, nimrod [slang], nincompoop, ninny, ninnyhammer, nit [chiefly British], nitwit, noddy, noodle, numskull (or numbskull), oaf, pinhead, prat [British], ratbag [chiefly Australian], saphead, schlub (also shlub) [slang], schnook [slang], simpleton, stock, stupe, stupid, thickhead, turkey, woodenhead, yahoo, yo-yo, dumb cluck.

              The one in there that fits you best is cretin: a stupid, vulgar, insensitive person.

            8. pgoodwin1:

              No, no, no. You will not get delusional on here and get away with it. You cherry pick a tiny portion of something and twist and manipulate it.

              Fact: Apple copied Chrome’s card shuffling. Period. It’s exactly like it. This is look and feel AND user interaction, just like the shit they sued Samsung over. And you, and the rest of you idiots were screaming bloody murder over things like a leather calendar on the Galaxy SII or even the shape of icons! Now the copying like this browser card shuffling is “not something patentable” when it comes to something that is not only look and feel, but HOW SOMETHING WORKS. You fucking idiot.

              Fact: Apple copied WebOS on multi-tasking. You FAIL to mention HOW IT WORKS. Users scrub horizontally to move from App to App. If they want to quit an App, they swipe the card up. WebOS invented this and Apple copied them. Why didn’t Apple just stay with the multi-tasking they had? It was different. Palm has a patent on this. Now LG owns WebOS. If they wanted to, they could sue copiers.

              And Apple copied the entire look and feel of Windows Phone. Should Microsoft sue Apple? You fucking idiots would think Apple should sue Microsoft if the situation were reversed.

              What’s happening here is that you’re a fanboy and because of that, you’re delusional and thus irrational. You refuse to believe or accept anything negative about Apple.

              Suck on it:


            9. I’m not delusional. I made no claim about what Apple invented. You didn’t read what I said carefully enough before you went into a rant. But when did Google and Microsoft become the center of the gesture human interface on mobile devices? I must have missed it. My point was that many of the basic things you do on mobile devices with touchscreen interfaces are logical outgrowths of prior art. That means it’s not an invention. You think Google and Microsoft invented that stuff. People using touchscreens don’t want every device from every manufacturer to be completely different. They want some consistency so the learning curves are minimal. All of the companies know this and design similar logical functions, throwing in a few special ones they think might attract a buyer. The differences are in how well it works. Getting from point A to point B with the same gesture isn’t the same experience on all devices. Read the article again, then read what I said again, and go to your room and think about it.

            10. pgoodwin1:

              BULLSHIT. You’re a fanboy. The the same idiot on here saying that Apple should sue and support them in suing over the shape of fucking icons and an elastic band effect on a scroll bar along with leather on a calendar. Now you’re saying that all companies should borrow from each other and even copy each other because it’s consistency for the user.

              Do you realize that you meet the definition of delusional thinking to perfection? You rationalize away when Apple does x, but when other companies do x, it’s bad and they should be killed and Apple is the best and blah blah.

              You’re a hypocrite, and you’re delusional if you don’t accept the FACT that Apple copied other companies with iOS 7. And not just a little bit. A LOT. In MANY, MANY areas.

              When it comes to multi-touch, Apple wasn’t even in the same universe in terms of invention:

              “Multi-touch technology began in 1982, when the University of Toronto’s Input Research Group developed the first human-input multi-touch system.”

              Yet, Apple screams bloody murder whenever they perceive someone to “copy” almost any aspect of their software but they’re allowed to do it?

              They fucking sued a company because of the shape of icons and an elastic band effect on scrolling. It’s absurd and this is a double standard.

              Fuck Apple and fuck fanboys. I like Apple but this is bullshit. They’re hypocrites and you’re delusional because you DENY the EXTENT to of their copying in iOS 7. The ENTIRE look and feel is Metro, INVENTED by Microsoft. Microsoft even went so far as to license the Segoe font and modify it for their interface.

              Apple comes along and copies the look and feel AND a number of userflows and user interactions.

            11. @sfgh. “The the same idiot on here saying that Apple should sue and support them in suing over the shape of fucking icons and an elastic band effect on a scroll bar along with leather on a calendar.”

              I never said that. You’re confusing me with somebody else.

            12. And I never said Apple invented multi-touch technology. I said they brought it to the masses. I did say that Apple is the leader in the present state of the art of gesturing. They have been ever since they started putting trackpads on their products. they do it as good or better than anyone. Sorry you can’t handle that. I have never said Apple should sue anybody over a software design issue on any MDN thread ever.

              You state: … ” I like Apple but….” Now there’s some BULLSH#T as you call it. You are an Apple hater.

              You claim I’m a Fanboy that won’t ever admit anything negative about Apple. Wrong again. I’ve criticized Apple on MDN, on their support discussions forum, and on other sites like this. The latest being iTunes 11 (where they took away multi-window operation).

              To you, a Fanboy is anyone who says anything positive about Apple, doesn’t think like you, and isn’t trashing Apple whenever there’s an article that says something positive about Apple.

              I’ve stated here that Apple doesn’t do everything the best. But there hasn’t been very many products that Apple has fielded where overall, they are the best in doing what they were intended for. Other devices may do some things better, but are lacking in other areas.

              You didn’t go to your room and think about it like I told you to. You’re driving yourself crazy.

            13. @pgoodwin1
              sfgh’s post have two components, his poisonous rage and his (in his own mind) facts. Great job of showing up the “facts”.

            14. Great leaders and their quotes, sfgh style…

              “I have a dream, you bunch of clusterfuck dipshits. Listen up you friggin’ assholes.”

              Nelson Mandela
              “People must learn to hate, and if they can learn to hate, they can be taught to love, for love comes more naturally to the human heart than its opposite, you stupid assholes.”

              and this is a particularly ironic one for sfgh…

              “You must be the change you wish to see in the world, you pathetic fucks.”

              Or perhaps the teachings of Christ…
              “Shut the fuck up and love one-another”.

        2. As one commenter said on another post…
          “SFGH is so stupid that his serious posts sound like satire…”
          That’s what people think of you here, sfgh.
          Please go watch Jersey Shore for the rest of your life. That would be more productive than what you do here!

            1. Of course, he has every right to post. He does not have the right – by any social custom in any society I know of – to treat others with such utter disrespect.

              As I said in another location, he is an utter coward — with a different standard for his face to face life and his online life. I assert this because if he did talk to others like this in his daily life, he would not have a job or any front teeth.

            2. re “Middle East”
              Well – in many societies, the consequences of his behavior might be a lot more than getting his teeth punched in.

            3. I can assure you Seamus I act the same in reality. I cut through bullshit and get stuff done. I care about people. What my angle is… is to wake people up. Stop being so naive. Stop worshipping companies. Start doing something yourself.

              If everybody got off the fucking Internet and stopped complaining it would improve MY life.

              Stop supporting the system you don’t like. Stop driving. Exercise more. Do more things. Stop being delusional.


            4. Ahh. What an inspiration you are — helping us all see the light, and leading us to a better society.

              As I’ve said before, there is a very good reason why one of the most famous speeches of all time was NOT, “I have a dream, you bunch of clusterfuck dipshits. Listen up you friggin’ assholes.”

            5. @Seamus

              LOL, maybe that speech would not have gone down as an oratorical gem; but mightn’t a national ass-kicking have spurred much more progress in civil rights? After all, that rhetoric worked so well for the Black Panthers. Uh…

    2. Masterpiece of design but really bad color scheme for [cell phone] user interface.

      Not that skeumorphic was better or that it’s made for girls; it’s just not the “one size fits all” solution that skeumorphic was.

  1. I just watched the WWDC video today and I must say I’m really impressed by iOS 7 from what I saw. It does remind me a little of Microsoft’s new style, but that’s okay. Looking forward to getting it.

  2. That “three-axis gyroscope” is something all of the supported iOS devices have now, and it comes into play directly in the GUI (as part of that “reactive” experience), not just in games and other apps.

    Android devices may or may not have specific hardware components (like a gyroscope), so it limits what the OS can and cannot do. It also limits what developers can do.

      1. The fragmentation is already there. 🙂 What it leads to is a lot of wasted effort, because the spiffy feature you spent months adding to your app and testing may only work on 10 percent of Android devices you support. And you may also have to create and test the equivalent (less spiffy) “work-around” for the other 90 percent.

  3. iOS 7 is going to be awesome, as is every OS evolution from Apple. Why? Because they have the best designers, engineers, and programmers on the planet with just one mission: Insanely great products. Not the cheapest products, not the highest profit margin per quarter, not the highest return to stock holders, not then best way to extract data from its users and sell it to advertisers… Just insanely great products. And they deliver every time. I can’t wait.

  4. I have used apple products for many years, but I think those days are coming to an end.
    Apple seems not to care about their customers as they once did. My IPhone audio stopped working after the 6.1.3 update. Apple KNOWS this is a problem but has not admitted it, and not fixed the issue. This is shameful.

    1. A simple: “erase all settings and data” and a “start new iPhone”(do not restore from backup… All your data should be on the cloud anyway) will fix your problem.


    2. I’m running the latest version of iOS 6 on my iP4 and 5, and my iPad, and audio is fine on all of them, in fact I use the 4 as my default iPod, it was fine today all afternoon.
      Do a factory refresh and re-install, or take it to an Apple Store, it’s obviously not a general problem

  5. I think they definitely made this the best mobile operating system again! For awhile i was thinking that android would rule the mobile world soon but iOS 7 has a very clean modern look and I think once people use it they will realize that it is truly innovative. Although I don’t like the bright colors but I see that most of the OS is transparent, so I will be using a lot of dark colored backgrounds.

    1. That was The intention of the translucence so that when you add your own background the OS becomes a look and feel that you want. I already have dark backgrounds on mine and it changes the entire look of iOS 7

  6. It’s not about cool design or not… it’s about: hey samsung/google/windows, what about now? we’re too different, so keep distance for your on dignity. We’re supermodels… we may wear trash and still looks good. We’re fresh and ahead again. bastards.

  7. The skeumorphic or whatever you call the old design, was excellent and it had no drawbacks. Wasn’t the beauty of the UI the most acclaimed and unique factors of ios from day one ? I haven’t personally seen the whole UI. So I won’t make a judgement now. I have seen some screenshots and they are real bad, the icons, some of them really feels that somebody was learning how to draw. The media player interface is a real shocker. How can they release such a mediocre interface. I’am hearing poor reviews from all of my ios friends. And they are ios fanatics. That is what concerns me more. I never doubted Apple even at the time of the Map mess. But now, I’am a bit concerned.

  8. There are 3 types if Apple users:

    1. Those that think that Apple should be like everyone else.

    2. Those that aren’t ready for Apple’s distortion field and freak out.

    3. And those that just enjoy Apple products and roll with the changes that define Apple.

    1. 4. Those who obsess over apple and worship the ground steve job walks ( oh ya *walked on). This particular breed has become narrow minded, often times rejecting all technology that is not made by apple. To them apple are the innovators and everyone else are “copycats”.

  9. Think about it 100’s of millions of different iOS users… all with a different idea of what looks cool… I prefer a darker look.. so expect to add a darker background when I get to install iOS 7. The brighter colours should look great… to my eyes.
    As for the ‘mechanics’ of the new UI I can’t wait to get my fingers on it. The thinking behind the layers and how they are perceived seem to make so much sense… good work Apple!

  10. iOS 7 is the biggest fuckup ever in the history of Apple. It’s a piece of worthless trash that is derivative in every way to Android & Windows Phone 8.

    Apple is no longer cutting edge with its mobile software, it’s just following the latest trends. It’s ugly to boot. Uglier than your grandmother.

    1. Silly twit,
      It all about what iOS ca do. Are you or anyone else going to switch to an inferior system simply because you don”t like a few icon color choices?
      Please go ahead. Enjoy mediocrity while holding you head up high saying” I stood my ground. No blechy colors for me”!

    2. BLN, why do you have this obsessive need to show the world what a complete clot you are? Don’t small children point at you in the street and laugh? Aren’t you embarrassed to show your face in polite society?

    3. Agree with you BLN.

      As much as I am one who makes a living using Apple computers for decades this disappointing redesign is a troubling sign.

      Apple fanboy here, but I’m not blind in my devotion.

      I have posted this many times before Apple can make everyone happy.

      Offer customization of icons and fonts. Classic or modern look. Steve’s vision and design lives on for old farts like me and the progressive urbanites can enjoy the new look.

      Everyone wins.

      1. The IOS7 IPad Beta is at least 2 weeks away. It makes me wonder why for such a “simple” design.
        The last update finally got the tablet upto par. Apple going to take 10 steps back in the tablet market, for what? They are computer company, they need to increase their growth there. Leave the fickle phone market to the manufacturers that eat their young.

        1. If you have to ask why, you obviously don’t pay attention.

          It’s quite obvious the entire UI was designed with retina displays in mind. From the light font face to the extremely thin border around the battery icon, it’s undeniable. Unfortunately, the iPad mini is not retina. Therefor, they’re going to have to offer a modified UI for it, which takes extra time.

        2. There is so much in your comment that is complete rubbish I don’t even know where to start. Apple makes most of their profit from phones right now. It makes no difference when they release a beta for the iPad… it’s just a beta… it’s not for you. We have no problem working with the iphone beta right now and xcode 5 is working fine. No one will be able to release an iOS 7 app until iOS 7 is released this fall. The fact that you look at iOS 7 and call it “simple” leads me to suspect you know absolutely nothing about design, the design process, programming and the process that programmers go through.
          There is nothing “simple” about the design. They’re doing a complete overhaul of the entire iPhone/ipad experience. It took them 5 years the first time. (and only 3 months for samsung to copy it)

    1. The iPad version of iOS was announced that it was not available yet because it was not ready I’m sure that by the time but iOS is introduced it will be ready

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