Apple's Senior Vice President of Design, Jony Ive, used an interview at London's Design Museum to lash out at design copycats. He touched on many topic, including suggesting that design schools rely too heavily on computers, the "theft" of Apple designs, and explaining why the design of Apple's own products is formulaic.
In conversation with Deyan Sudjic, director of the Design Museum, Ive also said that Apple does not exist to make money. This will come as news to most people -- including, perhaps, Apple itself -- particularly as the company is currently the most valuable brand in the world. He insists that integrity is at the very heart of Apple, and that any money that may come rolling in is merely "a consequence".
The Design Museum is celebrating its 25th anniversary, and Ive is one of the most renowned designers in the world -- he's the sexy, accessible face of the design world. The suggestion that "our goal at Apple isn't to make money" will be hard for many to accept. Of course the company does make money, but for Ive this is just a happy side-effect of what it does:
There's no denying that Apple's and Ive's designs have influenced the direction in which many products have turned in terms of looks. But he's not happy at being influential in this way, and he's far from happy about companies who copy ideas:
Ive spoke a little about the birth of the Apple Watch, explaining that there are inevitable limitations to small devices strapped to an arm:
He also emphasizes the fact that Apple is about an ecosystem, not just individual products:
We also learn that the design team is made up of "17 or 18 people" and is unlikely to expand much more. Ive says that "it's wrong to make something different for the sake of being different" so it's safe to assume that there are not going to be any major surprises in terms of the look of new Apple products in the near future.
The (almost) full transcript of what Ive had to say can be found on the Dezeen website.