The man behind all of Apple’s iconic, historic, game-changing designs — Sir Jonathan (Jony) Paul Ive — is departing from the company. He served as Chief Design Office for almost 3 decades at the most valued company in the world.
Ive is one of the most prominent industrial designers and has led design team that created a suite of iconic products including iPhone, iPod and various Mac models. He also had a piece of share in designing the company’s “spaceship” Apple Park campus and creating the look and feel of Apple retail stores.
Despite stepping down, both Ive and Apple claim they will work together, Apple will remain a client of its new design firm.
Ive says the firm’s name was inspired by late-Apple founder, Steve Jobs. He said, “There was an employee meeting a number of years ago and Steve [Jobs] was talking . . . He [said] that one of the fundamental motivations was that when you make something with love and with care, even though you probably will never meet . . . the people that you’re making it for, and you’ll never shake their hand, by making something with care, you are expressing your gratitude to humanity, to the species.
“Jony is a singular figure in the design world and his role in Apple’s revival cannot be overstated, from 1998’s groundbreaking iMac to the iPhone and the unprecedented ambition of Apple Park, where recently he has been putting so much of his energy and care,” said Tim Cook said in the release. “Apple will continue to benefit from Jony’s talents by working directly with him on exclusive projects, and through the ongoing work of the brilliant and passionate design team he has built. After so many years working closely together, I’m happy that our relationship continues to evolve and I look forward to working with Jony long into the future.”
Ive also said, “While I will not be an [Apple] employee, I will still be very involved — I hope for many, many years to come. This just seems like a natural and gentle time to make this change.”
Apple said that Evans Hankey, current vice president of industrial design, and Alan Dye, VP of human interface design, will now report to Jeff Williams, who “will spend more of his time working with the design team in their studio.” Both Dye and Hankey have played key leadership roles on Apple’s design team for many years.
Before mounting to the status of Chief Design Officer, Ive made a name for himself at the company with the design of the PowerBook while still at the London-based design firm, Tangerine. He used to appear, for many years, in videos that showcased the design of Apple’s products.
Ive, with no doubt, has made a legendary contribution to Apple and will be known as one of the prominent faces in the history of the company.