When Scott Forstall was pushed out of Apple it was said that this would usher in increased collaboration between the company’s hardware, software and services teams. His responsibilities were divided between Jony Ive, Bob Mansfield, Eddy Cue and Craig Federighi. According to a new report, this collaboration may result in a new iOS visual design. It is said that before this management shakeup software teams would be kept out of the loop by the industrial design team and that they would use their own secret software team for work on prototypes. The report suggests that Apple’s software a.k.a human interface team is now briefed on prototype devices earlier. On the other hand Jony Ive is now present at the mobile software’s review sessions and gives his input on new designs. The atmosphere of these sessions has been described as cordial, despite the fact that the leads of these two teams have very different personalities.
Jony Ive is reportedly pressing for a simpler “flat design” for iOS. By going with this design Apple would be less constrained to today’s bitmaps, so essentially this could mean a radically different iOS visual design than the one we’re used to right now. While no further details about this are available, the report suggest that changes made will be conservative. Apple said that it was going to increase collaboration between all of these teams with the ouster of Forstall, and apparently it has been making progress on that front.
Apple recently drew criticism from BlackBerry CEO Thorsten Heins who said that iOS UI is dusty and old, saying that their innovation on this front has slowed down. BlackBerry offers a new UI with BlackBerry 10, but that was a completely different direction that the company had to take as it was fast losing relevance in the market. Apple doesn’t have that problem yet. Do you think its time that Apple made substantial changes to the UI? Can a new visual design for iOS be a step in the right direction? We know Apple is not one to rest on its laurels. They generally announce new software at Worldwide Developers Conference. Come summer 2013, perhaps we’ll get to see what sort of work these teams have done together.