x PhoneArena is looking for new authors! To view all available positions, click here.
  • Home
  • News
  • Apple's Jony Ive speaks about Apple product design and the competition

Apple's Jony Ive speaks about Apple product design and the competition

Posted: , by Victor H.

Tags:

Apple's Jony Ive speaks about Apple product design and the competition
Apple’s lead designer Jony Ive is often viewed as one of the driving forces behind Cupertino after the passing of Steve Jobs. After all, Apple is known for its no-compromise product design and Ive has been heading the design department for a while. British-born Ive is known for rarely speaking up in public and that’s why this detailed interview about the way Apple devices are born is of particular interest.

In it, Evening Standard’s Mark Prigg, asks Ive about both the internal process of making an idea into a product and - of course - about the competition. In a nutshell, hard work and sound ideas are what Apple’s designer sees at the core of the tremendous success of Cupertino. Check out part of the Q&A below and jump to the source link below for the whole thing. Do you agree with what Ive says, or do you think there are other companies that can offer a similar all-in-one functionality and looks package? Chime in with opinions below.

Jony Ive on what makes design different at Apple:
We struggle with the right words to describe the design process at Apple  but it is very much about designing and prototyping and making. When you separate those, I think the final result suffers. If something is going to be better, it is new, and if it’s new you are confronting problems and challenges you don’t have references for. To solve and address those requires a remarkable focus. There’s a sense of being inquisitive and optimistic, and you don’t see those in combination very often.

Ive on how products shape up at Apple:
What I love about the creative process, and this may sound naive, is this idea that one day there is no idea, and no solution, but then the next day there is an idea. Where you see the most dramatic shift is when you transition from an abstract idea to a slightly more material conversation. But when you make a 3D model, however crude, you bring form to a nebulous idea and everything changes — the entire process shifts. It galvanises and brings focus from a broad group of people. It’s a remarkable process.

Ive on Apple’s goals with products:
Our goals are very simple — to design and make better products. If we can’t make something that is better, we won’t do it.
Jony Ive on why has Apple’s competition struggled to make great products:
Most of our competitors are interested in doing something different, or want to appear new — I think those are completely the wrong goals. A product has to be genuinely better. This requires real discipline, and that’s what drives us — a sincere, genuine appetite to do something that is better.

Jony Ive on trying to solve a problem in product ideas:
There are different approaches — sometimes things can irritate you so you become aware of a problem, which is a very pragmatic approach and the least challenging. What is more difficult is when you are intrigued by an opportunity. That,
I think, really exercises the skills of a designer. It’s not a problem you’re aware of, nobody has articulated a need. But you start asking questions: what if we do this, combine it with that, would that be useful? This creates opportunities that could replace entire categories of device rather than tactically responding to an individual problem. That’s the real challenge and very exciting.

Jony Ive on how does he know if he’s succeeded:
One of the things that really irritates me in products is when I’m aware of designers wagging their tails in my face. Our goal is to create simple objects, objects that you can’t imagine any other way. Get it right and you become closer and more focused on the object. For instance, the iPhoto app we created for the new iPad completely consumes you and you forget you are using an iPad.

Jony Ive on whether consumers really care about good design:
Consumers are incredibly discerning, they sense where there has been great care in the design, and when there is cynicism and greed. We’ve found that really encouraging.

Jony Ive on why users have become obsessively attached to Apple products:
When I used a Mac I had a keen awareness of the values of those who made it. I think people’s emotional connection to our product is that they sense our care, and the amount of work that has gone into creating it.

source: ES via 9to5Mac

22 Comments
  • Options
    Close




posted on 12 Mar 2012, 11:05 3

1. rhinoceros (Posts: 33; Member since: 01 Mar 2012)


Easy to see with their track record of selling recycled products that are tweeked that they aren't trying to design products with a huge leap which contradicts what he said

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 11:08 1

2. itiswhatitis (Posts: 419; Member since: 23 Jan 2012)


Hey... he looks like my soccer coach!

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 11:18 1

3. PhansMuneeb (Posts: 337; Member since: 28 Jan 2012)


U R RIGHT...

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 11:44 1

4. itiswhatitis (Posts: 419; Member since: 23 Jan 2012)


When i saw i got notification for your reply I thought "Someone's saying it doesnt have anything to do with the ariticle" but hey you proved me wrong!

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 11:50 4

5. ZEUS.the.thunder.god (unregistered)


Ive on Apple’s goals with products:
"Our goals are very simple — to design and make better products. If we can’t make something that is better, we won’t do it."
i dont agree with this statement. if that was really the case, apple couldn`t have made anything after original iphone. they have been introducing the same phone every year with few tweaks.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 12:12 3

7. iamcc (Posts: 1319; Member since: 07 Oct 2011)


I agree and disagree with you. They have been introducing a very similar phone each year with a few tweaks.

Coincidentally those "few tweaks" are generally improvements over the year before. I think that reinforces his statement which is that the iPhone already is a very well-rounded device and as many would agree requires little improvement in a lot of areas.

I'm not going to say it's perfect (because for me it isn't even close) but for a lot of people it does everything they need.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 12:56 2

9. ZEUS.the.thunder.god (unregistered)


i agree with you that for a lot of people it does everything they need but its always marketed as next big thing in tech, revolutionary, magical etc. and its not even close to that.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 13:58 1

15. cellphonator (Posts: 298; Member since: 29 Oct 2011)


Marketing is the BS artists specialization, unfortunately it doesn't go with reality, it's a tool to sell more, just like this interview.

posted on 13 Mar 2012, 01:22

21. WWThinker (Posts: 31; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)


"... that is better, we won't do it". In this statement, the better is mostly for Apple, not necessarily for consumers. If it is for consumers, it will not use the proprietary battery charging connector on the iPhone and iPad, it will have a built-in USB connector, it will have a built-in microSD memory card slot (especially when Apple controls the OS and the certification how accessories and 3rd parties work, ...)!

posted on 13 Mar 2012, 01:29

22. WWThinker (Posts: 31; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)


I am always skeptical of the true attitude of Apple . After all, somebody at Apple told me that I didn't know how to properly hold the iPhone4 in my hands. This is despite of a big fault in the design of iPhone4 and myself and many owners of iPhone4 hold various Ph.D degrees and fellowship in the universities all over the world. Regardless, Apple's products are simply the interpretation of the decision makers at Apple what can sell, and how to align the marketing machine to create continual streams of hype and the subsequent draws on demand.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 11:52

6. speckledapple (Posts: 877; Member since: 29 Sep 2011)


I must admit, I think he has the idea of what some of these manufacturers try to do down. They all want to create something different but do not often think about the why or the how the end user will translate it. Some products you can tell are born out of greed with an emphasis on tech that makes it more difficult to do simple things. While others take greater care to make sure it works. That is why samsung has done so well with its products, they are focused on one thing not several (i.e. HTC and their previous exploits).

Its not enough to simply be different. In that right, John makes sense.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 12:39 2

8. ilia1986 (unregistered)


"A product has to be genuinely better"

I wonder if he has ever heard of Android..

Probably not. Steve and now Tim probably keep him sealed tight in an Apple lab..

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 13:33 4

10. good2great (Posts: 1035; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)


android is not "genuinely" better... its better because it offers a more technical solution for getting things done on a mobile device.

apple has "genuinely" nailed it with the iphone. thus the minor improvements each year. they understand that its about perfecting the quality of a solid product instead of scrapping it and totally creating a different style product.

yes, we all know android has "more" to offer to users. not taking that away at all...

but when it comes down to it... people are intrigued about how the iphone just stands out from the competition. you look at it and just know they put a lot of time, effort, and care into it.

whether it has all the new bells n whistles in technology or not... it is a "wanted" device... point blank period.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 13:40 4

11. networkdood (Posts: 5538; Member since: 31 Mar 2010)


And, how does APPLE stand out from the competition? Because it is a status symbol?

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 13:47 1

13. good2great (Posts: 1035; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)


the status symbol yes, and the way that it was designed and performs... it became a symbol because of the connection it has with its users yall call "iSh$$p" i hate that term but its true lol... Mr. Ive explained why it stands out...

"Jony Ive on why users have become obsessively attached to Apple products:
When I used a Mac I had a keen awareness of the values of those who made it. I think people’s emotional connection to our product is that they sense our care, and the amount of work that has gone into creating it."

i didnt mean stand out saying its "THE BEST" its more of a "consistent" product...

have you ever owned an iphone or ipad? if you have, then you know exactly what i'm talking about.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 13:46 2

12. ilia1986 (unregistered)


I'm sorry but offering a more tchnical solution for getting things done on a mobile device - all the while having more to offer to users == genuinely better.

I really struggle to think of another definition to that.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 13:53

14. good2great (Posts: 1035; Member since: 22 Feb 2012)


i agree partially with that ilia1986 lol...

the disagreeing part would be is how consistent or how precise are those solutions... would bump it up to being "genuinely" better...

honestly i believe Samsung will help bring that "genuine" feel to android products... this galaxy line is pretty impressive and they are pretty much sticking to one system with major improvements to each galaxy device they release... similar to how apple operates with releasing new iphones but apple makes small improvements...

i think we just get frustrated with apple because we expect them to have a "comeback" device every year to keep up with the "Tech Jone's" but apple doesnt care about that... they will take their precious time to add 4G or a 4 inch screen or 4 cores to their products... then watch how easy apple users gravitate.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 14:08 1

16. Jphones (Posts: 230; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)


This is craps "genuinely better" my butt cheeks if that's the case they wouldn't be coming up with these dang S version of phones. Their have like one different feature that can go into almost any other model they make they just make it for the profit because they know Appleheads will buy it. Smh he lying through his porcelain venier teeth. We'll all see if the the i5 is really better besides a different design and LTE.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 16:05

17. BattleBrat (Posts: 885; Member since: 26 Oct 2011)


I think that people like apple products because they're not rubberized plastic bricks, YES I KNOW that rubberized plastic bricks take abuse MUCH better than the aluminum and glass electronics (Ipod touch, Iphone 4(s), HTC Titan I, other HTC products) The Droid 1 had significant metal on it, but (unlike a Iphone 4(s)) it took CRAZY amounts of abuse, but it, like apple products, had a premium feel to it, (I'm using it as an MP3 player, listening to it right now in fact) Which might explain why the Droid 1 did so well. The DROID RAZR has finally broken the ranks and brought sexy to android, even my most diehard Apple fan friends admit it sexiness, they say if they went android it would be a RAZR, WHY? Because Moto actually gave a crap and designed it to be Sexy, and sexy it is!, no rubber plastic brick like the Bionic, or the Droid X 2. People like a premium feeling phone.

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 16:45 2

18. atheisticemetic (Posts: 377; Member since: 18 Dec 2011)


"Our goals are very simple — to design and make better products. If we can’t make something that is better, we won’t do it."

sooo tell me why you made the Iphone?

all joking aside, this is a complete garbage statement. Different is fine, but better? not by a long shot!

When i can compare the Droid X2 (release May 2011) to the Iphone 4s (October 2011) as having very similar specs and having a 6 month gap between them. What exactly makes the Iphone better.

You have great advertising, good for you apple....

posted on 12 Mar 2012, 22:10

19. garz_pa (Posts: 152; Member since: 03 Nov 2011)


John Ive on how Apple handles the competition:
Sue them all!

posted on 13 Mar 2012, 01:13

20. Jphones (Posts: 230; Member since: 10 Feb 2012)


Yes we have one simple goal to get all your money for a device we tell you how to use and is made in sweat shops which we know about but are to busy counting your money to care about.

Want to comment? Please login or register.

Latest stories