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Jony Ive Talks Apple’s New Headquarters & iPhone X in New Interview

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Wallpaper* has just published a new interview with Apple’s chief design officer, Jony Ive. During their time together, Ive dished on Apple’s mammoth new campus and the disappearing iPhone.

At the forefront of Apple headquarter’s design is flexibility. “I don’t think it is necessary to be explicit about its flexibility,” the English designers insists. “But that flexibility is absolutely as powerful as in buildings where the primary story, is ‘Hey, you can reconfigure this.’”

“Our building is very configurable and you can very quickly create large open spaces or you can configure lots of smaller private offices. The building will change and it will evolve. And I’m sure in 20 years’ time we will be designing and developing very different products, and just that alone will drive the campus to evolve and change. And actually, I’m much more interested in being able to see the landscape, that is a much more important capability.”

As opposed to Apple’s previous HQ, which was made up of separate buildings, The Ring is a unified whole, allowing for a new way of working. “That’s one of the things that I am absurdly excited about,” says Ive. “At the moment, there are a number of physically really disconnected design studios, and now we can share the same studio.”

“We can have industrial designers sat next to a font designer, sat next to a sound designer, who is sat next to a motion graphics expert, who is sat next to color designer, who is sat next to somebody who is developing objects in soft materials. And adjacent to every set of closed offices there is a very large open area of collaboration. It’s not just a corridor; these are large spaces that are repeated all the way around the building.”

He also went on to add: “We have managed to keep it to four storeys and you very much have a sense of space and a relationship with the built structure. That is one of the reasons we have spent so much time on the stairs. There are so many connections between the floors. There are the light wells that go all the way down. You have visual connections to the floors and connections by the stairs.”

In transitioning, talk shifted to Apple’s newest iPhone delivery, iPhone X, namely design aspects that are no longer present, as well as evolution of the product. “I’ve always been fascinated by these products that are more general purpose,” Ive notes. “What I think is remarkable about the iPhone X is that its functionality is so determined by software. And because of the fluid nature of software, this product is going to change and evolve.”

“In 12 months’ time, this object will be able to do things that it can’t now. I think that is extraordinary. I think we will look back on it and see it as a very significant point in terms of the products we have been developing.”

“So while I’m completely seduced by the coherence and simplicity and how easy it is to comprehend something like the first iPod, I am quite honestly more fascinated and intrigued by an object that changes its function profoundly and evolves,” Jon adds. “That is rare. That didn’t happen 50 years ago.”

While many do and will always have gripes with Apple’s flagship smartphone, one thing is for certain, its multi-touch screen was an absolute game-changer. “If you think of what multi-touch afforded, on the one hand it was so powerfully intuitive, because you could directly manipulate content,” says Ive. “But because it wasn’t effected by physical buttons, you could create an interface that was very specific to an application. That’s why the App Store could be and you could have such an extraordinary range of applications and user interfaces.”

To hear more from Jony Ive on the new Apple HQ, iPhone X and more, follow over to Wallpaper*.