Jony Ive — Apple’s Chief Design Officer and arguably the biggest influence on the look and feel of the company’s products for nearly three decades — is officially parting ways with the technology company to form his own design firm, LoveFrom. And even though Ive’s firm will continue to work with Apple from the outside, this is still the end of an era for Apple.
A creative person
Ive first started at Apple in 1992, as a member of the design division, where he primarily helped create the Apple Newton. Five years later, Ive was ready to leave, but Jobs appointed him as Apple’s senior vice president of industrial design. This was the beginning of the creative partnership that would put Apple back on the map. The two began work on what would become the iMac the day that they met. That kicked off a slew of products that did not only turn Apple into a corporate force to be reckoned with, but that also set the gold standard for design across the technology industry at large.
The iMac’s success was shortly followed by another even greater one: the iPod. Which was another Jobs / Ive collaboration that would cement Ive’s place as Apple’s right hand man. Jobs was looked at as the visionary, whose ideas would change the world of computing. And Ive was the one who would dress them up and make them irresistible to consumers. At the height of the iPod’s popularity, Ive’s designs were so ubiquitous that even the white headphones that came with the device were instantly recognisable among people.
And of course, there’s the many generations of the iPhone, Apple’s most important product. The one that literally would change our opinions on what we even thought about a phone should be. All of that design — the touchscreen, the home button, the form factor — came from Ive. And that influence would spread through the industry, to the point where many phones today still follow Apple’s lead in terms of design.
And no doubt that, today every smartphone has been inspired by the original iPhone full-screen design. Not to speak about the fact that every laptop gets compared to the iconic MacBook Air design. With that said, Ive’s aesthetic and design ethos will for sure continue to echo on through Apple’s halls. Because isn’t that what legacies are all about after all?