Design Stories February 8, 2017

pinterest

Pinterest is introducing a new feature for its iOS app called Lens. Rolling out now as a beta feature, Lens lets you point your camera at your surroundings to discover new design ideas based on what it captures.

expand full story

Design Stories January 19, 2017

Apple News Format updated with new HTML list stylings and a new Design Tutorial

Apple has announced a new update to their Apple News Format, which is used by publishers on the Apple News platform. The update today includes list item stylings for HTML formats within posts, and a new design tutorial to help new publishers hit the ground running.

Design Stories August 4, 2016

supreme_court_building_at_dusk

The United States Supreme Court is set to take on Samsung’s appeal over Apple’s design patent case in two months, and today Apple has submitted an amicus brief with support from 111 famed designers ahead of the trial. Prominent names featured in the amicus brief supporting Apple include Dieter Rams, Calvin Klein, and Lord Norman Foster who is the designer behind Apple’s Campus 2 project. The Supreme Court is scheduled to take on Samsung’s appeal of the ruling in favor of Apple on October 11th.

expand full story

Design Stories May 13, 2016

Design Hunt for iOS gains 3D Touch support + general improvements

Daily design curation and inspiration app Design Hunt has seen a 2.1 version upgrade today focusing on improving overall performance and introducing 3D Touch features to the iPhone 6s and 6s Plus. Today’s update also introduces Design Hunt on the web so users can continue their discoveries on the desktop. Curating content from multiple sources like Designer News, Dribbble, Pinterest, and Fast Co, Design Hunt helps surface some of the best design content and ideas everyday.

Design Stories April 14, 2016

More Apple Campus 2 renderings emerge, show reception buildings, food stands, more

The design of Apple’s upcoming Campus 2’s main ring-style building is no secret. We’ve seen numerous images and renders of the spaceship-like building, as well as drone flyover videos to give us updates of construction progress. Now, Silicon Valley Business Journal has shared renders of some of the other building that be on Apple’s new campus.

Design Stories March 17, 2016

5s

In January, we reported that Apple would be launching a new 4-inch iPhone in March with a design “nearly identical” to that of the iPhone 5s from 2013. Since then, several rumors and teases from various case makers have teased that the new 4-inch iPhone may have a design that looks a bit closer to the iPhone 6 in both shape and look. Checks with additional sources indicate that the iPhone SE, to be launched at Apple’s March 21st event next week, will look “almost exactly the same” as the iPhone 5s…

expand full story

Design Stories March 13, 2016

Photo-iPhone-7-Catcher

It is new iPhone rumor season once again: Following case leaks for Apple’s next-generation iPhone models last week, expected to debut in fall, an image purports to show technical drawings for the iPhone 7 chassis (via NowhereElse.fr).

The images show the back of the phone. At first glance, it’s worth noting that the horizontal antenna lines on the back of the phone are gone completely. There are still lines along the bottom edge of the device, represented by the lighter line following the curve of the body, but the main straight antenna lines seen on iPhone 6s are not present in these drawings. Looking closely, the images also suggest that the camera has changed for the iPhone 7 …

expand full story

Design Stories February 24, 2016

iPhone5se

We have been reporting since earlier this year that Apple is preparing to launch a new 4-inch iPhone called the iPhone 5se. Our sources have said that the new device is essentially the 2013 iPhone 5s with significant internal hardware and software upgrades. Earlier rumors about a next-generation smaller iPhone model called the device an “iPhone 6c” and said that it would look similar to the iPhone 6 in appearance.

Today, a case maker source provided us with schematics that line up with what we have been hearing from our sources who have used the iPhone 5se: the device looks nearly like a 5s.

expand full story

Design Stories January 22, 2016

applewatchmockup5

Even though I’ve owned a Mac for going on 5+ years now, I never thought I would actually end up using screen savers. But the launch of Aerial a few months ago, which I’ve been using daily ever since, has definitely changed my mind. Awesome Apple TV screen savers on the Mac is a win. And today I came across the Apple Watch Screen Saver for OS X by Rasmus Nielsen and immediately knew it would be my next screen saver of choice.

Incorporating over 80 combinations of the already recognizable and well designed Apple Watch faces, all in Retina display quality, it makes a great additional screen saver to have installed. For those unfamiliar with the process of installing new screen savers on the Mac, or just want an overview before starting, I’ve put together a small guide below to walk you through the process:

expand full story

Design Stories January 13, 2016

iAds

Apple’s rocky iAd advertising platform is about to see some major changes, says Buzzfeed’s John Paczkowski. According to the report, Apple plans to dismantle its iAd sales team and stop its role as a middleman between publishers and customers:

While iAd itself isn’t going anywhere, Apple’s direct involvement in the selling and creation of iAd units is ending. “It’s just not something we’re good at,” one source told BuzzFeed News. And so Apple is leaving the creation, selling, and management of iAds to the folks who do it best: the publishers.

Apple is phasing out its iAd sales force entirely and updating the iAds platform so that publishers can sell through it directly.

The big news, Buzzfeed notes, is publishers that play ball will take home 100% of the ad revenue generated rather than a 70/30 split with Apple.

expand full story

Design Stories December 8, 2015

cases

Like many this morning, my first reaction to Apple’s Smart Battery Case was … what the heck? Albeit not expressed in those exact words. Seth tweeted that it seemed to be evidence that Jony Ive has left the building.

My colleague Jeremy has addressed the battery case specifically, but I think there’s a broader issue here. Apple claims to sweat the details when it comes to the design of its devices, and – a few grumbles aside – I think that’s a legitimate claim on the aesthetic front. It does go to obsessive lengths when it comes to making its devices as visually pleasing as possible. One part of that obsession is making iPhones as thin as it can.

But, to my mind, the company has an almost schizophrenic attitude here. It goes to all that trouble to make the phones as slim and sleek as humanly possible, yet it knows full well that the first thing the vast majority of owners do when they take delivery is to slip the phone into a case. Those cases substantially increase the thickness, and hide the design.

Which brings us to problem two …  expand full story

Design Stories November 16, 2015

Early Mac UI designers say Apple has abandoned many of its human interface design principles

Two of the early Mac user-interface designers argue in a lengthy FastCo piece that Apple has abandoned many of its original human interface design principles in both OS X and iOS, and a switch to an alphabetic rather than hierarchical list seemingly puts aesthetics above all else.

Don Norman and Bruce Tognazzini say that five of “the most important principles” are now “largely or completely missing in iOS”:

  • discoverability – having all possible actions be visible
  • feedback & feedforward – making it obvious what a function will do, and what it has done
  • recovery – the ability to undo a mistake, or get back to where you were before
  • consistency – using the same gestures across platforms and hardware
  • encouraging growth – helping people tackle more complex tasks when they’ve mastered the basics

Norman and Tognazzini also say that Apple violates many of Dieter Rams’ design principles, a German designer who Steve Jobs has said greatly influenced his own thinking. They say that Apple prioritizes Rams’ 10th principle – “good design is as little design as possible” – over the other nine.

I’d note that iOS 9 tackles one of their criticisms, offering an easy ‘Back to’ function when a link has taken you out of the app you were using, but it’s an interesting read.

Design Stories September 2, 2015

Xiaomi MacBook Air lookalike rumors resurface as Bloomberg reports Samsung talks

Xiaomi – a Chinese company noted for cloning Apple’s product designs, iOS look-and-feel and even keynotes – is once more rumored to be going after the MacBook Air with its own premium-look laptop.

Rumors first surfaced at the end of last year, with an apparently Photoshopped image very reminiscent of the MBA design. Xiaomi at the time denied that the image was its work, and said that it was actually a clone known as the Kaka i5. But Bloomberg reports that the company is indeed considering launching an ultra-light laptop in the first quarter of 2016.

Xiaomi Corp. is considering the introduction of its first laptop early next year, people with direct knowledge of the matter said, opening a new front in its battle against Apple Inc. and Lenovo Group Ltd. Xiaomi’s notebook may go on sale in the first quarter.

The company is said to have held talks with Samsung to discuss the supply of memory chips and displays for the un-named laptop. Both Xiaomi and Samsung declined to comment.

Design Stories August 17, 2015

Screenshot 2015-08-17 22.10.41

Earlier this month, the United States Patent Office made a non-final ruling that one of Apple’s design patents for the original iPhone is invalid within Apple’s long-running lawsuit against Samsung, according to a report from FOSS Patents. This particular patent, as seen in the drawings above, references the overall design of the original iPhone launched in 2007. It is known as the “D’677” patent in court proceedings and legal documents. FOSS explains the reasoning behind the invalidation:

expand full story

Design Stories August 13, 2015

antonio-de-rosa-iphone-7-concept-3

As regular readers will know, it took a little while for the Apple Watch to really grow on me. But even back when I wasn’t convinced I needed a smartwatch, I still had to admire the design. And the Digital Crown was a large part of how Apple got the smartwatch right when others hadn’t yet cracked it. A fundamental problem with a small touchscreen is that touching it covers up much of the content. The Digital Crown overcomes that, allowing us to scroll content without our thumb getting in the way.

But while today’s iPhone screens may be larger than they used to be, they are still pretty small in the scheme of things. Scrolling with a thumb still covers up a chunk of the content. Worse, it’s easy to accidentally tap on targets accidentally including ads. There have been numerous occasions since using Apple Watch when my thumb started absent-mindedly reaching for the non-existent Digital Crown on my iPhone …  expand full story

Design Stories July 1, 2015

Screen Shot 2015-07-01 at 10.19.09 PM

After announcing the change in a company-wide memo last month, Apple today has officially updated Jony Ive’s executive bio on Apple.com to reflect his new role as Chief Design Officer. Ive was promoted from Senior Vice President of Design earlier this year. Ive’s bio notes that he reports directly to Tim Cook and is responsible for all design at Apple, including retail, Apple Campus 2, software, and hardware.

expand full story

Design Stories June 11, 2015

Poll: What do you think of Apple’s new “Technicolor Yawn” iTunes + Music icon?

When Apple Music launches around the world on June 30th, the icon for Music on iOS and iTunes on OS X is set to change from the pinkish orange version we’ve had since iOS 7 and OS X 10.10 to one drenched in technicolor (yawn). Apple generally only changes the icon for Music and iTunes after a major feature addition or overall redesign, and the idea here is to attract attention and have more people look within the app to discover Apple Music. But are you a fan of the new icon design?

Design Stories June 5, 2015

IMG_5704

Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference is about to kick off. On Monday, June 8th, company executives will take the stage at San Francisco’s Moscone Center to provide their annual roadmap for Apple’s software, services, and devices.

Traditionally, Apple has used the conference to introduce major upgrades to the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch operating system iOS, as well as the Mac operating system OS X, along with new services. Of course, 2015 will be no different. Apple has been preparing a new version of iOS 9 codenamed “Monarch,” a release of OS X 10.11 codenamed “Gala,” a new streaming Apple Music service based on Beats Music, and updates for the Apple Watch.

Over the last several years, we have provided advance reports on the lion’s share of announcements that will be made at WWDC, as well as a comprehensive roundup ahead of the event. Read on for our roundup of what’s coming, along with fresh new details not found in our earlier reports.

expand full story

Design Stories June 4, 2015

Apple’s Marc Newson responds to Apple Watch criticism, Apple Car reports, & talks fashion

Marc Newson, famous designer and close friend of Apple design guru Jony Ive, just gave his first solo interview since joining Apple last year. In the interview with the London Evening Standard, Newson talks Apple Watch, thought to be one of the first products he had involvement with since joining the company, as well as the future of the company from fashion to cars. 

When asked about Apple Watch, and specifically the criticism from the fashion industry, Newson responded:

Design Stories May 4, 2015

Screenshot 2015-05-04 17.57.19

In line with our report from a couple of weeks ago, Apple has just debuted an official program for third-party accessory developers to design and launch bands for the Apple Watch. Like the MFi program for iPhone, iPads, and iPod accessories, this new program is called “Made for Apple Watch.” One of the device’s marquee features is its ability to connect to different straps by way of a standard connector on either side of the Watch, and now, much like with iPhones and iPads, accessory makers will be able to make good use of the product…

expand full story

Hero1

Precision. That’s the word that immediately came to mind the minute I picked up my Apple Watch for the first time. Something about this device felt different, on an almost subconscious level, from any other Apple product I’ve used before. Perhaps I was just caught up in the moment. After all, the Watch is the first totally new product to come out of Apple since the introduction of the iPad, which feels like so many years ago. On the other hand, I knew from the onset that I planned on buying the Apple Watch mostly for its design. I wasn’t so much interested in all of the software features it could offer me, I just couldn’t imagine not having this shiny little box on my wrist. With that in mind, let’s take a closer look at the Apple Watch strictly as a design piece.

expand full story

Design Stories April 24, 2015

See the clever Apple Watch collapsible plug in action (Video)

Jony Ive has often said that great design solutions are always obvious in retrospect, and I think the UK plug for the Apple Watch is a great example of this. As soon as you see how it works, you wonder why all travel plugs aren’t made like this.

Design Stories April 17, 2015

Photos show Apple Watch’s clever UK plug design, and a custom strap or not …

You’ve probably seen a dozen celebrity endorsements of the Apple Watch by now ahead of its official ship date to customers in one week, but the latest photos shared by famed rugby player and captain turned cyclist Will Carling give us the first look at the power adapter expected to be included with the device in the United Kingdom.

Design Stories April 3, 2015

Reeder 3 for Mac coming soon w/ redesigned interface, will be a free update

After Google Reader announced its closure, popular RSS client Reeder was forced to step back, retool, and eventually relaunch its Mac client with support for multiple RSS services. Now, Reeder is preparing to launch another major update to its Mac app with heavy design tweaks for OS X Yosemite.

Powered by WordPress VIP