Apple kills the skeuomorphism in iOS Podcasts app

Apple kills the skeuomorphism in iOS Podcasts app
If there's anything that Apple has loved with iOS design, it has been skeuomorphism, aka recreating distinctly non-digital things - woodgrain, bookshelves, tape reels, etc - in a digital platform. We've heard rumors that Apple is looking into a redesign of iOS, and maybe the Podcasts app is the first step in that, because Apple has updated the app to remove the skeuomorphism.

The update ditches the old tape deck inspired design for a simpler design that features podcast art instead. Overall, the design has been simplified, and there are a couple of new features as well. There is a new option to create custom stations where podcasts will automatically be updated. Stations backup to iCloud and sync to all of your devices. There is also an option for on-the-go playlists, and syncing playlists from iTunes. 

Of course, the iOS Podcasts app is one of the worst rated Apple apps available, and there's no guarantee that this update fixes the worst of the issues. There are bug fixes, and the generic performance updates to look forward to. If you want to give it a shot, the Podcasts app is available for free in the iTunes App Store



1. Aeires unregistered

Premonition of things to come. Might be good, might be nothing at all.

2. AppleConspiracy

Posts: 637; Member since: Oct 18, 2011

This example indicates that the newly formed human interface design team led by Jony Ive will not introduce radical changes to Apple's UI/UX philosophy. They will merely reduce the amount of *redundant* skeuomorphism, like they did here. That being said, this intervention is *not* ditching skeuomorphism, because there's still three-dimensional texturized complex effect in interface present, they've just removed the *unnecessary* mimicry (tape deck) Apple has gone too wild in applying lately, which is contradictory to the Ive's (D. Rams') "good design" philosophy, where only that which is neccessary should be present and look good. This means that there is no indication that purpotedly "flat" design (like Metro/Modern UI) will be implemented as radical change in software section. Besides, there is actually no non-skeuomorphic design. You can of course ditch all the leather, paper and swiss watch, but you still have to remain at minimum of real-world recognizability. You still have to represent phone app with a "old-school phone" icon to be recognized as phone, even if it's "flat". It's only a matter of 2D or 3D, not skeuomorphism per se. I think Apple will continue to have skeuomorphism, but somewhat simplified, freed from redundant associations. For example, the interface could still make use of "clear" materials, like glass or metal, just removing the "complex" ones, like wood, leather etc. Of course, those are my wider thoughts on the subject, it's not directly related to the text in the news article!

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