x PhoneArena is hiring! Reviewer in the USA
  • Options

Jony Ive pushing a flatter, simpler iOS design to the Apple design committee

0. phoneArena 21 Mar 2013, 16:49 posted on

It sounds like we may finally get our wish, Apple may finally update the UI of iOS. If you want to be kind, the UI on iOS is consistent; if you don't want to be kind, it's stale. Aside from the notification tray and adding a row of icons, the iOS UI hasn't really changed since the iPhone first hit the market, but it sounds like that is changing. Apparently, Jony Ive is even pushing a flatter, simpler iOS design to the Apple design committee...

This is a discussion for a news. To read the whole news, click here

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 16:51 35

1. g2a5b0e (Posts: 3724; Member since: 08 Jun 2012)

Wait...what? It's possible to make iOS more simple than it already is? Any simpler & I doubt it will qualify for smartphone status anymore.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:38 3

13. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)

If you ever work on an OS, you would know the software is generally bloated and full of bugs. I had a co-worker who a beta-tester for MicroSoft OS, and after a cut-off period, MS stopped fixing bugs.

Also, if you ever talk to any good programmer, i.e. when memory was scarce and expensive, they were forced to write great code. Today, with memory being so damn cheap, great code programming is a lost art.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:43 13

17. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)

One big way iOS can become a bit simpler is in the look of it. One of the biggest pet peeves Apple employees in Cupertino had was the skeuomorphism in some of the apps. Some were well done while others left you wondering what faux leather had to do with finding my friends. Making these things universal throughout iOS would be an improvement. The iTunes update was a simplification as well, but not in look, but in function. There are a few new ways to look at your media, but overall, iTunes is simpler and easier to navigate. It still has the same features though.

Remember, Apple wants to appeal to as many folks as possible. They want to aim iOS at people who are frustrated with Android or Windows Phone/Windows RT. They aren't really trying to impress die hard Android fans. There is no wooing you guys :-)

But in the end, this is good news. The collaboration between software and hardware is absolutely needed. We'll see more features, more options. Maybe the friendlier environment will lead to better ideas instead of what we saw with Forstall.

Remember, simple may not mean basic function. Simple is consolidating. Making apps work with each other instead of being standalone. Simple is consistency throughout.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:48 9

21. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)

Apple Insider has a pretty good write up fleshing out my point a bit more if you're interested in reading...http://appleinsider.com/articles/13/03/21/apples-ive-brings-software-hardware-teams-together-in-push-for-flat-design

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 12:52 1

80. Droiddoes (unregistered)

aplle sucks donkey labia

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 18:50 6

31. Penny (Posts: 1648; Member since: 04 Feb 2011)

Don't know why people thumbed you down JeffdaBeat. Guess people don't like hearing about the fall of skeuomorphism.

I agree with you, they should be aiming for consistency one way or the other. Given what is currently popular, I would wager that they will go the flat route, as suggested by Jony Ive.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 20:15 2

42. ZeroCide (Posts: 773; Member since: 09 Jan 2013)

IOS Sucks!!!

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 23:51 3

60. gallison83 (Posts: 10; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

Defend your comment, please ZeroCide

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 04:39

73. BitterTruth (unregistered)

Bitter Truth -_-

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 20:53 10

46. JeffdaBeat (unregistered)

Meh...it's the reason I don't post all that much. It's just gotten to the point where you can't say anything good about Apple without getting thumbed down...even if it does make sense. No conversation anymore.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 21:53 5

52. 305Bucko (Posts: 506; Member since: 07 Aug 2011)

I gave up on that a long time ago myself. I mean look at comment 42, how do you reason with ignorance?

I read your comment. I thought it was reasonable. The only problem is, like you said, you cant have a normal discussion here without some trolling all over it.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 23:12 6

56. quakan (Posts: 1373; Member since: 02 Mar 2011)

I agree...I've always thought your posts were well written and carefully thought out and I always liked reading your take on stuff but somehow this site became littered with trolls and platform extremists that have dampened the site's overall experience...but hey what do I know.

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 02:17 2

69. gallison83 (Posts: 10; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

I agree. Any article lately on PA that mentions Apple but doesn't mention Apple crumbling to pieces in some way leads to a massive flame war. On the flipside, when a PA article highlights a shortcoming at Apple, most of the comments start with "HAHAHAHAHAHAHA!" or something like that.

posted on 23 Mar 2013, 10:27

82. roscuthiii (Posts: 2217; Member since: 18 Jul 2010)

Wish you posted more though. While I have my own personal preferences of OS, I try to remain open to any and all possibilities as things develop.
You always seem to deliver an even handed & well reasoned perspective on all topics Apple, even while being an Apple user... which is a rarity on internet forums given the propensity of people to associate their own worth with the worth of their chosen branding (any branding - not specifically Apple) & live vicariously through their devices.
+1 to you.

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 06:02

74. Aeires (unregistered)


From what I've heard out of Apple, Ive hates all the skeuomorphism so it won't be a surprise if it's reduced to a standard background across the OS. Is that what he means by "flatter?" Time will tell, as always with Apple.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:57 13

22. AnTuTu (Posts: 1580; Member since: 14 Oct 2012)

Now they gonna copy Android, BB10 and WP8 platforms lolz

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 18:06 6

25. jcarrigan (unregistered)

is there any way the ui on the Iphone could get any simpler? lol

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 02:25

70. gallison83 (Posts: 10; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

Is there any way that the backend of Android could become as complex as iOS? Android's strength puts most of the control of the experience in the hands of the user and leaves very little for the kernel and backend to manage. iOS does admittedly limit your experience to what can be provided in the App Store, which must be coded by Xcode on a Mac. The trade off here is overall system stability. Facebook may force close on iOS on a weekly basis for me. In my year of ownership of two iPhones I have maybe experienced two times where the entire phone rebooted. Facebook on my Android tablet was able to bring the entire tablet down with a force close until it was updated.

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 02:55 2

71. ojdidit84 (Posts: 458; Member since: 16 Jul 2011)

I'd just like to know what Android tablet you were using that could be brought to it's knees by Facebook force closing. I've had Facebook force close many a time before they made the native android app but I've never experienced even a phone or my tablet being brought down from a force close of any kind.

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 15:53

81. downphoenix (Posts: 3165; Member since: 19 Jun 2010)

well you're wrong about Android because a lot is actually handled on the backend by the kernal. In fact android apps dont even run native technically but through a virtual machine. This is intentional design so that if an app malfunctions it will not affect the actual OS. Of course, this isn't ALWAYS the case, but that's how its designed to be.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 19:20 1

34. lyndon420 (Posts: 4374; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)

Well...if you want to get technical, from the carrier's standpoint, how often do you see the iphone listed under the smartphone category? You won't in Canada anyway.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 19:27

35. D.Aceveda (Posts: 396; Member since: 30 Jun 2012)

Well said midnight

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 16:54 13

2. disneydad (Posts: 114; Member since: 26 Mar 2012)

So it will become more like WP?

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 16:59 1

3. MartianMe (unregistered)

no one cares anymore as long as they don't steal the widgets idea from android.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:06 5

7. NE_BE (Posts: 19; Member since: 21 Mar 2013)

Half, no wait, over 70% off the people who buy android phones where i work don't know what a widget is, let alone that you can customize them...

If they wanna go simple, that won't be the direction they're going. Or at least it shouldn't be.

In my opinion widgets are small, mini, limited and thus useless versions of apps.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:25 7

12. kozza3 (Posts: 697; Member since: 17 Oct 2012)

why not educate yourself on how useful widgets are and then pass that knowledge onto your customers?

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 22:42

55. Tuxedo (Posts: 346; Member since: 19 Mar 2013)

I'm an S3 owner, and I see why Android needs all those widgets; you need to be able to easily toggle every single radio and sensor on the device because otherwise, it'll drain the life out of the phone. On the other hand, when I had the iP4, I had almost everything ON and battery life was great. Almost as if iOS took care of it all for you. Who is the smarter phone now? I got to admit iOS did a better job as an OS than Android does on my S3. You literally need to baby this thing. And all of those comments about iOS being just an app launcher... pure ignorance. An OS is much more than a GUI. GUI is just one of the elements of an OS.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 23:42

57. gallison83 (Posts: 10; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

I totally agree with you, Tuxedo. Apple has always been minimalist on the UI but EXTREMELY complex on the backend. Most people probably don't realize that iOS is forked from OS X, where a heavy emphasis on efficiency shows through most functions. Being the hardware and software vendor means that your consumer base doesn't have to fret over things like battery life or setting features.

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 01:09 2

66. infinitemethod (Posts: 149; Member since: 04 Sep 2012)

So I guess the sg3 having over an inch more of screen real estate or it being much more powerful than an iphone 4 has nothing to do with battery drain? Talk about ignorance...
Also, ios is an app launcher os. You still cant even truly multi task with it.

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 02:09

68. gallison83 (Posts: 10; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

That all depends on how you use it. That extra inch might net a better YouTube experience, but honestly multitasking is best left to something with enough horsepower and screen real estate to actually display it, like 15.6 inches, with a triple core AMD Phenom II, 8 GB of RAM and an SSD with 230/160 mbps read/write. You might have convinced me with only 3G data that multitasking was vital. With LTE data speeds, I can leave threads on my mobile processor dedicated only to the task on the screen with slight dips for an incoming message or email, then I could fly over to the next app and update on an LTE backbone within seconds. Don't bring a steak knife to the forest expecting to clear land. :P Then again, I'm a traditionalist who loves his PC and would rather work from it over a phone.

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 06:55

77. infinitemethod (Posts: 149; Member since: 04 Sep 2012)

I agree with you to an extent, however, I am a power user (have a Note 2) and with the ability to have two apps open at once on that display in or out of the office, I actually get a ton of work done on the device. Of course the sg3 display is smaller, it still has that functionality, which is nice!

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 08:30

78. Tuxedo (Posts: 346; Member since: 19 Mar 2013)

Actually, that's the interesting part; even with the screen off, it will use over half its charge overnight if you leave radios on and the phone unplugged.

Not to mention, the GS3 has a 48% higher capacity battery; that should more than make up for it, but it does not.

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 10:27 1

79. infinitemethod (Posts: 149; Member since: 04 Sep 2012)

Yeah, that's horrible. My Note 2 lasts more than a day and has very little overnight drain. Maybe 3 or 4%.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 23:56

61. gallison83 (Posts: 10; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

Aside from power users, the standard user does not use widgets. The standard user does not root. The standard user pretty much goes for things that they normally would do on their laptop. And most people never realize that you don't have to run Windows on a laptop.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:02 14

4. cloud_atlas1991 (Posts: 61; Member since: 21 Dec 2012)

FLATTER and SIMPLER are tantamount to UGLIER and MORE BORING.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 20:28 1

45. Hemlocke (unregistered)

No, it's tantamount to ditching hideous skeumorphic elements like the cassette tape player in Podcasts, or getting rid of the faux leather look in the calendar app.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 23:50

59. rusticguy (Posts: 2828; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)

In short getting rid of all traces of Forstall and Steve Jobs :D

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 00:03

62. gallison83 (Posts: 10; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

So I can take my Toyota Corolla and throw a huge body kit on it, ground effects, custom wheels and a Pep Boys muffler tip and make my car more interesting?

I'd rather strip the car down, remove unneeded creature comfort systems and reinforce the frame to make the car light, lean, and efficient. That's how I run my Android tablet. My Android tablet pretty much mirrors (as much as my tab can) how my iPhone is set up. Lets have some civilized conversation, now shall we?

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:02 8

5. jphillips63 (Posts: 221; Member since: 04 Jan 2012)

iOS is for folks who are scared of change. It may work and work well for those fan boys who thinks its the in thing but really iOS will never be anything exciting.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:10 1

8. Roomaku (Posts: 278; Member since: 06 Feb 2012)

They're talking about design of the OS not functionality. I think the changes would probably include toning the "cutesie" app designs like felt in Gamecenter, and other designs that look like textures we are familiar with or represent the actual item.

Probs not something like thishttp://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zv-r9UTGri4

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:11 5

9. WHoyton1 (Posts: 1635; Member since: 21 Feb 2013)

Jeez a two year old chimp could use iOS so how the gonna make it simpler!!

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:45 2

19. ardent1 (Posts: 2000; Member since: 16 Apr 2011)

WHoyton1 -- the GUI runs on top of the iOS. The two year chimp knows how to use iOS GUI.

Please learn to discern the difference GUI and OS. Most android bashers make the same mistake. The GUI is stale and dated, but the iOS is still robust.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:21 9

11. InspectorGadget80 (unregistered)

Simpler means it still looks the same. Looks like they don't want too evolve their ios.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 20:28

44. gallitoking (Posts: 4718; Member since: 17 May 2011)

so that means that Android is not a simple OS right?

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 21:14 1

49. protozeloz (Posts: 5396; Member since: 16 Sep 2010)

Actually android is quite simple, I see lots of easy to do things in there

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 22:40 1

54. rusticguy (Posts: 2828; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)

I guess it would depend on IQ. It's simpler than learning to drive a car for sure but tougher than plain walking.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 23:49

58. gallison83 (Posts: 10; Member since: 30 Apr 2012)

Simpler oftentimes equals efficiency. If your GUI is pulling far less power, then you are free to optimize other processes without sacrificing battery life. Android did the same thing with Project Butter. They made things simpler in the GUI so that they could run VSYNC at 60 FPS. If VSYNC @ 60 FPS was run on ICS or Gingerbread, you probably would end up blowing your graphics cores under the stress or sacrifice your battery or sacrifice your performance on your widgets and apps.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:38

14. ahmed_ali_yossef2010 (Posts: 164; Member since: 26 Jul 2012)

I really appreciate the designs of this man they are incredible let's see if this will work with ios

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:42 10

16. Fuego84 (Posts: 344; Member since: 13 May 2012)

Apple ran out of ideas and they can't steal ideas like they used to because everyone armed themselves with patents when Apple began patent trolling. They did it to themselves over a panic that Samsung would eat their market share.

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 17:46 8

20. sprockkets (Posts: 1611; Member since: 16 Jan 2012)

Oh oh, this is the groundbreaking change the stupid analyst predicted!!! It will change everything, again! (thrid time, for those counting how many times apple used that stupid meme).

posted on 23 Mar 2013, 12:43

84. dragonstkdgirl (Posts: 144; Member since: 07 Apr 2012)

It was only three?? Could have sworn it was more.... lol

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 19:02

32. Android4u (Posts: 456; Member since: 16 Aug 2012)

This new UI is going to change the damn world!!!

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 19:04 2

33. rusticguy (Posts: 2828; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)

Basically a hint that nothing much will be happening ... it will be an eye wash ...

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 20:14 2

41. ZeroCide (Posts: 773; Member since: 09 Jan 2013)

If anything happens you won't see it till iOS 8 or 9

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 20:23

43. TROLL (banned) (Posts: 4851; Member since: 13 Apr 2012)


posted on 21 Mar 2013, 20:56

47. Allen3697 (Posts: 86; Member since: 26 Mar 2012)

How much more simpler can it get??

posted on 21 Mar 2013, 21:18

50. protozeloz (Posts: 5396; Member since: 16 Sep 2010)

I think simple is such a subjective word, and iOS is just marketed as simple, when is far from being that, simple is just a word of marketing.... People think is simple because apple says so, not because its really simple to the consumer doing average stuff, and honestly it has just become a see saw of parts they have been attaching year after year...

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 00:08 2

63. rusticguy (Posts: 2828; Member since: 11 Aug 2012)

How can it be simple when to clear cache of open browser session i have to close browser (ie go to home) open Settings and then clear cache and then again go to home and fire safari. Call this simple? SIMPLE My foot.

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 00:34 1

64. protozeloz (Posts: 5396; Member since: 16 Sep 2010)

Its what I'm talking about, you can totally see how iOS is minimalist yet not simple, for starters the lockscreen

On android you have the lock screen, move the ball outwards of the circle, and it unlocks, every time the screen goes on the lock screen will "tilt" inviting the user to swipe left of right, one side for the camera, the other for widgets.

On iOS it says swipe to unlock , now for camera witch looks like a button user must swipe up, but for messages user needs to swipe right, there is no hint telling the user about it.

Another example is the keyboard, its always in caps, press randomly the caps button and tell me if you can tell if its lowercase or UPPERCASE.

And that's just the start, iOS has a forced crown, the foul king of simplicity...

posted on 22 Mar 2013, 01:18

67. infinitemethod (Posts: 149; Member since: 04 Sep 2012)

Excellent example! By the time tt takes me to check the weather and set an alarm for instance, I have to open 2 to 3 apps in ios. I can look at my android homescreen and have that info right there right in front of me and then make one click on clock to set an alarm. Ios is so far behind, nothing they do will change that.

* Some comments have been hidden, because they don't meet the discussions rules.

Want to comment? Please login or register.

Latest stories