Jony Ive: Apple nearly gave up on touch with the first iPhone

Apple's senior vice president of design Jony Ive did not mince words about the competition at today's Vanity Fair New Establishment Summit. When he sees designs from Apple in the products of other companies he isn't very flattered.

The official Twitter account for Vanity Fair tweeted some choice quotes from Jony Ive. Here are some of our favorites:

I think a beautiful product that doesn't work very well is uglyI don't see it as flattery, I see it as theft, and it's lazy. - on Xiaomi's copy-cat phoneThere were a thousand reasons, and many occasions, where we nearly gave up" on touch

Hit up the Vanity Fair Twitter stream to see some more. There should be video shortly posted online of Jony Ive. We'll share it when it does go live.

Source: @VanityFair

Sam Sabri
  • So he gets upset when others do it but I'm sure he's ok with Apple doing it? Face it Jony, Apple has done their fair share of stealing/copying/whatever you wanna call it Sent from the iMore App
  • hmm apple never copy you face it
  • What is Notification Center?
  • if you think its a copy than latin letter on every phone is also a copy smh
  • Let's stick to hardware shall we?
    Try and do better then that, or can't you?
  • Sorry, I'm an avid apple user but you're wrong. Lots of research shows that apple took many other ideas and put them together in one product. Not much was their own. Do the full research, you'll see. And I'm not suggesting others didn't copy either. Again, I just wish the public would stop defending the same companies that are taking exorbitant amounts of money from your pockets, and defending them. I just don't get it. Sent from the iMore App
  • The feature originated as a (lock screen notification) hack on the iPhone and was available on the Cydia market. Google lifted that and added the pull down feature. The Cydia based hack was eventually modified to use pull down as well. Apple then hired the original developer. Meanwhile, Google applied for a patent (which would never hold up in court due to prior art). There, feel better?
  • No, not particularly. I'm going to need some sources for that. Android's notification pulldown was there from day one. Provide me with a hard timeline and maybe then I'll be satisfied.
  • Unfortunately, these hacks that were available on Cydia weren't exactly accompanied with grand press releases, etc.
    Day 1 for Android was essentially the end of 2008 with the release of Android / G1 on T-Mobile. I can't even remember the names of all of those old products. I did find one of them, Lockinfo, that I can trace back to 2009, but there were others. The fact that Apple even hired the author of one of them should make it clear that they didn't just take it from Google though. Google didn't even apply for their patent until after there were other competitors in the market.
  • The older I can find was Taskbar Notifier, but Android demos from 2007 already had a noticaftion center in the status bar. The shade would come a few months later. The shade is the key novel implementation, which Apple and even Microsoft came to adopt. I'm not saying Google should be the only one to be able to use it, but if adopting a user interface design or paradigm is theft, then perhaps Sir Jony Ive should reconsider what he is claiming.
  • If we're going to start counting what was done before it shipped, then it gets to be a very grey area. For example, Apple has a patent application for this back in 2008, before Android even shipped. The point being, it's a stretch to say that Apple just lifted it from Google and I think it's fair to say that Google would never be able to enforce their patent.
  • They have. Everyone copies. It's not a bad thing. Everyone copied the iPhone's idea of the true smartphone, we got the Notification Center from Android, etc.
  • hmm not in my opinion sorry
  • Sounds like Fanboyism to me. Are you going to say that the GUI and the command line are variations on the same thing now?
    After all both are screens with text on.
    Not to offend but as stated above they ALL, (that means it includes Apple), copy from each other.
    If you can’t see that part alone then there is no help for you.
  • So UNIX stole command line?
    Stick to hardware.
  • Copying is fine as long as it’s hardware then? LOL.
    Fonbwa! BTW, do you remember the Swiss clock face they copied?
  • Swiss clock face?
    Gee, why don't we go back to the sun dial. Because the swiss I am sure invented that. You are just the type that has no point that he wants to but can't make.
  • Sticking to hardware, the two horizontal lines on the back of the iPhone 6 look the same as the lines on the back of the HTC One. And that's a much more specific design element than "rectangle with rounded corners" that Apple has tried to sue others for "copying"
  • Yes *everyone* copies. Open your eyes. Apple is no exception. Take the fanboy shades off for 2 seconds. Sent from the iMore App
  • Go hold an iPhone 6 next to an Xperia z2. Apple stole design aspects. Card style multi tasking stolen from WebOS. Notification center stolen. Apple Pay stolen. The list of stuff Apple stole is long. What does Joey say?
  • Jony not Joey.
  • Where do you think the WebOS card style multi-tasking came from? Switching tabs in Safari used the same metaphor and it pre-dated WebOS entirely.
  • hyper card stacks?
  • I have yet to hear anyone trot out this stupid truism who actually know anything about design or have ever designed anything themselves. It would take a few pages (or maybe you could take a design course at your local University if you qualify for that), to explain how completely wrong you are, but suffice to say ... you're wrong.
  • I hope you were replying to the other comment, because Apple, like everyone has "copied" at sometime. I mean even jobs had the quote about artists stealing.... Sent from the iMore App
  • Sadly, the people who quote Jobs on stealing, do so out of ignorance and out of context. Jobs was quoting Picasso and he was referring to how artists are inspired by things around them... such as in nature, etc. This was not about lifting a competitor's product.
  • The quote: "Picasso had a saying -- 'good artists copy; great artists steal' -- and we [Apple] have always been shameless about stealing great ideas." Sounds to me like he was talking about a little more than being inspired by nature.
  • +1 Sent from the iMore App
  • Please be a little more specific.
  • Who cares? As long as the phone in my hand is a great product and I'm happy with it, I don't care who copied who. Apple copy android, Samsung copied apple. Does it matter to the consumer? If apple didn't copy android then I wouldn't have a notification centre.
    If samsung didn't copy Apple then the S4 wouldn't have a fingerprint scanner. Plus a load more So in both cases, copying has given iPhone and S4 owners a better product! Sent from the iMore App
  • The S5 has the fingerprint scanner, not the S4. I agree with your point though. It's a give and take. The consumer wins in the end.
  • If your talking about Notification Center isn't androids a direct copy of Palm and Blackberry (among others before it) many of androids so called "stolen" features found in iOS came from Palm os which android "stole" first. When apple borrows an idea (or HTCand others) it is one thing especially If they are making it better or doing it a different way. Notification Center on iOS is hardly a copy of android because for one androids notifications are much better than ios (this would be the only thing I would say they currentlu do better). borrowinf ideas is nothing new, but Samsung has taken it to new levels. Such as setting out to confuse their users that they are using an iPhone. Apple hasn't stolen anything from googles android. I can't say the same when looking at what Samsung and others have done to apple.
  • They have indeed but let's face it they normally sprinkle a little Apple magic on and make it there own. Normally better version of what someone else has already made. Sent from the iMore App
  • All the OEMs steal designs from each other. Sent from the iMore App
  • IOS8 is not working well at all,so what does that make the beautiful product it is supposed to be working on,Ugly?? Sent from the iMore App
  • Very confusing title. I have no idea what it means. Is it even in relation to this article? To me it sounds like apple wanted to give up on the iPhone at some point. Sent from the iMore App
  • Agree. For a second I thought I clicked on a BGR story with misleading title.. Sent from the iMore App
  • The title of this article doesn't match the contents at all. Its about copying, not touch.
  • The article and title highlight a few quotes in vanity fair. It was an interview they did. Sent from the iMore App
  • Thank god Apple didn't give up on touch. Could you all imagine what we would all be using if Apple had given up on touch? It doesn't bare thinking about. I'm just glad they didn't give up on touch and the iPhone. Sent from the iMore App
  • What came first ios or android? Sent from the iMore App
  • People please shut up Sent from the iMore App
  • How many people are designers here? Sent from the iMore App
  • Hey Jony....Dieter Ram called to ask you to look up the word "hypocrite".
  • Such a bad article... even the Twitter quotes are bad. Some people shouldn't even write blog posts....