We all love Apple products and that’s no secret. But not everyone knows the man behind the beautifully designed products.
Sir Jonathan Paul “Jony” Ive (born 27 February 1967) is an English designer and the Senior Vice President of Design at Apple Inc. He oversees the Industrial Design Group and also provides leadership and direction for Human Interface (HI) software teams across the company. He is the designer of many of Apple’s products, including the MacBook Pro, iMac, MacBook Air, Mac mini, iPod, iPod Touch, iPhone, iPad, iPad Mini, Apple Watch and iOS 7. Steve Jobs considered Ive to be his “spiritual partner at Apple,” while Fortune magazine stated in 2010 that Ive’s designs have “set the course not just for Apple but for design more broadly.” – Wikipedia.
It’s unlikely that Apple welcomes reporters at its doors and let them spend time alone with it’s chief employees. But last year, The New Yorker had a chance to meet and speak with Jony Ive. Now that he has published a long article, I’ve decided to list out a few cool things about Jony Ive from the post. However, If you wish to read the whole article, you can click here.
- Jony Ive used to play rugby in secondary school and still has a bench-pressing bulk that he carries. The reporter stated that there were times, during the past two decades, when he considered leaving Apple, but he stayed, becoming an intimate friend of Steve Jobs and establishing the build and the finish of the iMac, the MacBook, the iPod, the iPhone, and the iPad. The New Yorker also says that he’s uncomfortable knowing that a hundred thousand Apple employees rely on his decision-making, his taste and that a sudden announcement of his retirement would ambush Apple shareholders. To take a number: a ten-percent drop in Apple’s valuation represents seventy-one billion dollars. According to Laurene Powell Jobs, Steve Jobs’s wife, who is close to Ive and his family, “Jony’s an artist with an artist’s temperament, and he’d be the first to tell you artists aren’t supposed to be responsible for this kind of thing.”
- Ive’s office room included his Playmobil likeness and similar gifts, dozens of custom sketchbooks. He also had a rugby ball, a Banksy print of the Queen with the face of a chimpanzee and a poster that read “Believe in your fucking self. Stay up all fucking night.” and “Think about all the fucking possibilities.”
- Bono has written about Jony in Time. It said, “To watch him with his workmates in the holy of holies, Apple’s design lab, or on a night out is to observe a very rare esprit de corps. They love their boss, and he loves them. What the competitors don’t seem to understand is you cannot get people this smart to work this hard just for money.”
- Akana, a designer in Ive’s lab proposed including an “orangey-brown” color of the cloth with models of the gold Apple Watch. Ive dismissed the color choice as something you’d find in a cheap student apartment.
- With rumours rounding up that Apple is working on a smart car, The New Yorker’s profile says that both Ive and his coworker Marc Newson are really into cars, but they’re apparently disappointed with what’s currently on the road. The New Yorker posted ” He and Newson are car guys, and they feel disappointed with most modern cars; each summer, they attend the Goodwood Festival of Speed, where vintage sports cars are exhibited and raced in the South of England. “There are some shocking cars on the road,” Ive said. “One person’s car is another person’s scenery.” To his right was a silver sedan with a jutting lower lip. Ive said, quietly, “For example.” As the disgraced car fell behind, I asked Ive to critique its design: “It is baffling, isn’t it? It’s just nothing, isn’t it? It’s just insipid.” He declined to name the model, muttering, “I don’t know, I don’t want to offend.” (Toyota Echo.). Ive owns an Aston Martin DB4, but he’s currently riding around in a Bentley Mulsanne. Ive says that he loves Bentleys entirely because of their design.
- Ive began studying industrial design at Newcastle Polytechnic (now Northumbria University). In the summer of 1987, he married Heather, who was a literature student at Newcastle University. He won a national student design competition two years running, once for a white desk phone that had a handset with a long handle, like a lorgnette. He started his career by working at the company where he had interned. A little later, he became the third partner in Tangerine, a London design consultancy co-founded by Grinyer. After Tangerine, he started working at Ideal Standard, a British bathroom-ceramics manufacturer. After that, he joined Apple.
- Though Abrams and his team created the initial design of the new lightsaber, Ive gave Abrams some very specific suggestions after seeing it and those suggestions will apparently feature into the final cut of the movie. It appears that he said, “I thought it would be interesting if it were less precise, and just a little bit more spitty.” A redesigned weapon could be “more analog and more primitive, and I think, in that way, somehow more ominous.”
- Apple was late to the party when it came to large screen phones but Ive said that “Earlier, the studio had designed a larger iPhone based on the architecture of the iPhone 4, but it was clunky and uncompelling.” so Apple never made it then.
- It isn’t a surprise that Jony Ive and Tim Cook doesn’t like the Google glass. Ive thinks that smart watches are a way better solution. The New Yorker posted When he later saw Google Glass, Ive said, it was evident to him that the face “was the wrong place.” Cook said, “We always thought that glasses were not a smart move, from a point of view that people would not really want to wear them. They were intrusive, instead of pushing technology to the background, as we’ve always believed.” He went on, “We always thought it would flop, and, you know, so far it has.”
- Ive asked the New Yorker not to name the company but from his statement, we can very well state that he was mentioning Motorola’s Moto Maker. The New Yorker said In one of our conversations, Ive was scathing about a rival’s product, after asking me not to name it: “Their value proposition was ‘Make it whatever you want. You can choose whatever color you want.’ And I believe that’s abdicating your responsibility as a designer.”
- Ive also said that Apple decided on making the iPhone 6 Plus with a gigantic 5.7-inch display but ended up making a 5.5 inch one for obvious reasons. Ive said “It’s awkward when you’re dealing with models,” Ive said. “Often you’re reacting, by definition, to newness, or difference.” The new has to be given time to annoy or disappoint. A few years ago, Ive and his colleagues assessed each prototype size of the future iPhone 6 by carrying them around for days. “The first one we really felt good about was a 5.7,” he recalled. “And then, sleeping on it, and coming back to it, it was just ‘Ah, that’s way too big.’ And then 5.6 still seems too big.” (As Cook described that process, “Jony didn’t pull out of his butt the 4.7 and the 5.5.”) Posted the New Yorker.
- Ive reportedly encountered resistance at Apple while pitching the Watch project: some at the company were concerned about how a watch would be displayed in stores; they were also worried that it might create a divide between more and less wealthy customers. Ive finally convinced Apple and formally began working on the smartwatch in fall of 2011, around the time the iPhone 4S was released.
- The Apple watch was always going to be rectangular which disappointed the majority, this wasn’t for technical reasons but because a circular display wouldn’t make sense. Ive said “When a huge part of the function is listed”—of names, or appointments—“a circle doesn’t make any sense, Its final form resembles one of Newson’s watches, and the Cartier Santos, from 1904.” Ive tells The New Yorker that he believes people are “okay or okay to a degree” with carrying around the same phone as everyone else, but that people will not accept this with a product that they’re going to wear around. That’s why his lab decided to use different materials for different models of the Apple Watch, including aluminum, stainless steel, and gold. Notably, while discussing the materials that they’ve explored using, Ive adds, “We’ve not stopped.” Ive also added that Apple wanted to make the Apple watch available for everyone so they made an aluminum watch that would cost 349$ which would be the base option and the Apple Watch edition, the one made with gold would cost thousands of dollars which were focused at the luxury heads, for those who demand luxury. Ive also stated that the stores were being redesigned for the Apple watch. As The New Yorker puts it, “These new spaces will surely become a more natural setting for vitrines filled with gold (and perhaps less welcoming, at least in some corners, to tourists and truants).” The New Yorker also stated that the Apple watch needed more time for consumers to actually use it. He quoted that “The Apple Watch is designed to remain dark until a wearer raises his or her arm. In the prototypes worn around the Cupertino campus at the end of last year, this feature was still glitchy. For Marc Newson, it took three attempts—an escalation of acting styles, from naturalism to melodrama—before his screen came to life.”
- Cook talked a lot about Beats Music and its playlists. We haven’t heard him talk about Beats headphones very much. This might be why “When I spoke to Cook, he lauded Beats’ music streaming service and its personnel before praising its hardware. “Would Jony have designed some of the products?” he said. “Obviously, you can look at them and say no.” He went on, “But you’re not buying it for what it is you’re buying it for what it can be.” Brunner is proud of the Beats brand, but it took him time to adjust to a design rhythm set as if for a sneaker company: “Originally, I hated it—‘Let’s do a version in the L.A. Lakers’ colors!’ ” He laughed. “ ‘Great. Purple and yellow.Fantastic.’ ” When I asked Cook about such novelties, he laughed: “I want Beats to be true to who they are. I don’t want to wave the wand over them in a day and say, ‘You are now Apple.’ Down the road, we’ll see what happens.” Said the New Yorker.
- iPhone 6’s protruding camera lens annoyed many people and phrases like “ It makes the phone ugly”, “ Even Steve Jobs would not have been happy with it”, “ It is surprising sight on a product out of Ive’s lab” etc were thrown around constantly and it seems that even Jony Ive isn’t happy about it. “Ive referred to that decision—without which the phone would be slightly thicker—as “a really very pragmatic optimization.”