In a wide-ranging and intriguing interview with Wallpaper, Apple Chief Design Officer Jony Ive talked at length about the significance of the iPhone X, the company’s gargantuan new spaceship campus, and much more. Though Ive is primarily seen as the design guru who steers the ship when it comes to Apple’s line of consumer products, Ive actually played an interesting role in the overall design of Apple’s new headquarters as well. Apple executives are notoriously tight-lipped, and Ive in particular doesn’t tend to sit down for extensive interviews, a fact which makes his interview here all the more fascinating.
When asked about Apple’s new iPhone X, a device which represents the biggest redesign to the iPhone form factor in years, Ive explained that the device’s edgeless display is brimming with untapped potential. When asked if he misses traditional tactile inputs such as the old school iPhone home button or the even older clickwheel on the iPod, Ive effectively answers that the potential offered up by the iPhone X design easily outweighs any nostalgic feelings he may have for Apple’s iconic products of old.
“I’ve always been fascinated by these products that are more general purpose,” Ive explains. “What I think is remarkable about the iPhone X is that its functionality is so determined by software. And because of the fluid nature of software, this product is going to change and evolve. In 12 months’ time, this object will be able to do things that it can’t now. I think that is extraordinary. I think we will look back on it and see it as a very significant point in terms of the products we have been developing.”
Indeed, the clean slate that is the iPhone X display harkens back to the original iPhone introduction in 2007. There, Steve Jobs explained that removing the physical alpha-numeric keypad from the smartphone would allow the company to do things that no other company could do. In a similar vein, the edgeless display on the iPhone X will allow Apple and third-party developers to completely transform the user experience as we know it today.
“‘So while I’m completely seduced by the coherence and simplicity and how easy it is to comprehend something like the first iPod,” Ive added, “I am quite honestly more fascinated and intrigued by an object that changes its function profoundly and evolves. That is rare. That didn’t happen 50 years ago.”
Ive’s interview is well worth reading its entirety and can be found over here.