Jonathan Ive

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It's sad and frustrating that we are surrounded by products that seem to testify to a complete lack of care.

Sir Jonathan Paul "Jony" Ive KBE, HonFREng, RDI (born February 1967 in Chingford, London), is a British industrial designer and the senior vice president of Industrial design at Apple Inc.. Two-time winner of the Design Museum's inaugural Designer of the Year award (2002, 2003).


  • Very often design is the most immediate way of defining what products become in people's minds.
  • The memory of how we work will endure beyond the products of our work.
    • A reference to the Apple design team, in an interview at the Design Museum (2003)
  • The defining qualities are about use: ease and simplicity. Caring beyond the functional imperative, we also acknowledge that products have a significance way beyond traditional views of function.
  • The more I learnt about this cheeky – almost rebellious – company, the more it appealed to me, as it unapologetically pointed to an alternative in a complacent and creatively bankrupt industry. Apple stood for something and had reason for being that wasn't just about making money.
    • On how he felt when he used a Mac for the first time at college, in an interview at the Design Museum (2003)[citation needed]
  • There's an applied style of being minimal and simple, and then there's real simplicity. This looks simple, because it really is.
  • I think so many of the objects we're surrounded by seem trivial. And I think that's because they're either trying to make a statement or trying to be overtly different. What we were trying to do was have a very honest approach and an exploration of materials and surface treatment. So much of what we try to do is get to a point where the solution seems inevitable: you know, you think "of course it's that way, why would it be any other way?" It looks so obvious, but that sense of inevitability in the solution is really hard to achieve.
    • In an interview in Icon Magazine (July 2003)
  • It's sad and frustrating that we are surrounded by products that seem to testify to a complete lack of care. That's an interesting thing about an object. One object speaks volumes about the company that produced it and its values and priorities.
  • Being superficially different is the goal of so many of the products we see . . . rather than trying to innovate and genuinely taking the time, investing the resources and caring enough to try and make something better.
  • I think there's almost a belligerence - people are frustrated with their manufactured environment. We tend to assume the problem is with us, and not with the products we're trying to use. In other words, when our tools are broken, we feel broken. And when somebody fixes one, we feel a tiny bit more whole.
    • Ive (2007) cited in: Lev Grossman "The Apple of Your Ear", Time Magazine, Friday, Jan. 12, 2007: About the iPhone upon its introduction*
  • We have always thought about design as being so much more than just the way something looks. It's the whole thing: the way something works on so many different levels. Ultimately, of course, design defines so much of our experience.
    • Ive explaining his view on Apple's use of design in the product video shown at WWDC 2013 for iOS 7.
  • I think there is a profound and enduring beauty in simplicity; in clarity, in efficiency. True simplicity is derived from so much more than just the absence of clutter and ornamentation. It's about bringing order to complexity.
    • Ive explaining the design philosophy behind iOS 7 in its product video, shown at WWDC 2013.
  • To create something that's genuinely new, you have to start again, and I think with great intent, you disconnect from the past.
  • I think a beautiful product that doesn't work very well is ugly.
  • Paying attention to what’s happened historically actually helps give you some faith that you are going to find a solution. Faith isn’t a surrogate for engineering competence, but it can certainly help fuel the belief that you’re going to find a solution. And that’s important.
  • My father was a really good craftsman – he was a silversmith – so I grew up understanding how things were made. That’s something that’s easy to take for granted, but everything that has been made has been thought about, designed, and I think that growing up with an appreciation of the nature of objects was hugely influential to me.
    • Vogue: "Quiet By Design: Naomi Campbell Interviews Jony Ive" (2 April 2018)
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