In June, Apple’s chief design officer, Jony Ive, announced he was leaving Apple in favor of beginning his own design company. Even with his exit, Apple isn’t harboring any ill will — they’ll be among Ive’s primary clients. Though Ive is stepping away from Apple in a sense, he said that his company will continue working closely with the tech giant.
Ive had been with the company since 1992. He designed the iMac, Power Mac G4 Cube, iPod, iPad, iPhone, MacBook, as well as the user interface for some of the mobile operating system iOS. His design philosophy is focused on a form following function and simplicity — a “less is more” methodology. Ive helped with the Apple Park campus, as well as the look and feel of their many retail stores across the nation. He is known as an accomplished and acclaimed designer, described as “integral to the success of Apple.”
Ive’s new company, known as LoveFrom, is a partnership with Marc Newson, another industrial designer who has worked on everything from airplanes to jewelry design.
What it Means for Apple
Following Ive’s departure, leaders on Apple’s design team will now report to Jeff Willilams, new chief operating officer. Evans Hankey and Alan Dye have a lot of experience too, having both been members of the leadership team for some time. Ive has indicated that he is incredibly confident in the ability of Williams, Hankey, and Dye. While Ive will clearly be missed at Apple, the show must go on. Take solace perhaps in the fact that Apple did not (and probably won’t) name a replacement, instead counting on Ive to fulfill many of the same roles within his new company.
In a press release from Apple, it was made clear that Ive has recently been focused on the design of the Apple Park campus, meaning that the company has likely been operating with only his supervision on their last few releases, with the bulk of the work being done by the design team mentioned above.
Ive’s Future in Industrial Design
Although there is always wild speculation when someone of Ive’s status leaves a major company, his motives are presumably pure. For twenty years, Ive was limited to Apple-specific designs. Working with interesting products, such as Tablets and iPhones, for two decades can wear on anyone. Now, Ive will be free to create for Apple, but also in addition to Apple.
For the world of industrial design, this could mean great things. Ive is touted as a force of nature in the design world, and remains one of the only designers easily identifiable by a more general population. His talent seemingly knows no limits, and it’s only a matter of time until we see what his transforming relationship with Apple will bring.
Fusion 360: A Tool to Help any Designer
With the right tools, even novice designers can aspire to great things. Seasoned designers like Ive may still require the help of support communities and materials, collaborative tools, and software designed to allow your innovation to soar, such as Autodesk’s Fusion 360. With online collaboratives like Fusion 360, hobbyists and companies alike are free to focus on creative designs that can ultimately change lives!