Apple is the poster child of design that everyone looks up to. Some have even gone as far as saying that Apple is popular more because of its design than the excellence of its products. But it’s not the hardware alone that the brilliance of Apple is limited to, in fact, it covers all aspects of business imaginable. Apple is a complete package with amazing hardware, excellent software, flourishing stores and a strategic point of sale and all these factors combined make its products irresistible.
Our article today has brought to you the strategies that Apple employ in its design that makes it so successful. This brief discussion will let you know all that you need to about these masterful tactics.
Less is More, and Pretty Much Enough:
Apple stopped using the ‘multicolored translucency’ around late 90s and early 2000s to move towards minimalist design which was an up and coming thing to adopt at that time. Most of the consumer electronics manufacturers take the easy path of buying the designs off the shelf but Apple went out of the way and took the difficult path where it started from scratch and came up with a design that is Apple’s distinctive features today. To make this design a reality, the company worked hard and employed all of its think tank to take new kind of materials and come up with totally new manufacturing processes.
Apple made a wise move to not limit its resources and labor force only in its native country and industry but reached out to engineers and marketers from other industries and also the manufacturers from China who worked on contracts. These manufactures actually contribute in making a lot of products for Apple. Apple has a wonderful design philosophy which states that the company’s aim is to avoid everything that “does not need to be there”. It achieved Apple that minimalist design that was the reason of its popularity among masses and allowed the company to charge a premium for it.
Attention to the Details:
It was under Jobs that the level of craft that Apple employed became gratuitous. He paid attention to details; for example, Macintosh had a laser-etched Apple logo which was in a place that the owner could see it only when moving it but even that fine symbol was enough to matter.
He made architecture of Macintosh orderly and clean though it was not something of a big deal but it made an impression on those few people who admired these fine details, designed for those who had an eye for such a thing.
Probably the longest leap that Steve Jobs made in improving the concept of technology was that even high-tech devices can be user-friendly. Picture the Mac icon, a smiling symbol and then the symbol of IBM ThinkPad which looks intense. Compare the two. Both are high-tech devices but the user-friendliness of Apple is way more than the professional and bossy looking IBM. This was decades back. Taking the example from modern day, take the smoothness of iOS and the roughness of Android, though both are excellent in their own ways. All these years, Apple has come up with devices that are cutting-edge yet user-friendly, designed in such a way that even a novice consumer does not think it is daunting and appeals to him. Anyone who is overwhelmed by the capabilities of a computer can also find Apple products refreshing and easy to use.
Evolving Without Losing the Track:
Jobs had the view that the simplicity of the design should be linked to making the products easy to use. Although these goals usually do not go together but like every unconventional thing that Jobs did, he also overcame the negativity that even a bit too much simple design can get intimidating and unfriendly to use.
There was so much going on in that period that going over all of it would take a lot of time. The main thing that Jobs wanted and aimed at was to make his products simple. But he also realized that if he wants to take simplicity as his life-guard, he should design in such a way that users are already aware of. The graphical interface used in the first Macintosh and that of iPhone and iPad have the same range of physical metaphor and in turn the gestures that control them are so much like those what we do in everyday world. That was the key behind the creation of an intuitive interface, something that even the computers at the time couldn’t do.
Absolutely High Quality User Interface:
Apart from the top quality hardware, it’s the user interface too that has a perfect quality and Apple has put a lot of work into making a user-friendly interface for all of its products. MacBooks, iMac, iPhone, iPods and iPads; all have a remarkable user interface and having the Apple’s signature minimalist design which is always the top concern for the company.
Integration of Hardware and Software:
iPod needs iTunes in the PC to download songs and put them in the device and iPad needs iTunes Store to buy and download ebooks and thousands of applications. This is the integration of hardware and software that Apple has introduced and that has become an integral part of Apple’s design strategies. This element is not only money –making strategy for the company but also provides a more fun environment for the user to enjoy his Apple device.
Consistency in Design:
Like every other successful manufacturing business and even more than anyone else, Apple has shown a considerable consistency in all the elements of all its products. From hardware to UI and from branding to advertising, even its packaging all are streamlined to perfection and stick to it. This approach of being consistent in its design is what makes Apple stand apart from the rest of such companies.
The talents of Steve job lied in his ability to understand what he learned and to hold it firmly so that he got principles that totally consumed him. His luck favored him as all the lessons he learned were additive, which is, he could put the pieces together and it would turn into one piece of coherent design philosophy. The reason of failure of most of the electronic manufacturers and such is that they have designers who have a design opinion but there is no real philosophy behind it so in turn, when they sit down to design it, the final product does not come out to be as effective as they wanted.
Everyone who knows what good design is has some motivating factor behind it that set him on this path. Same was the case with Steve Jobs. He was so far sighted that his designs were ahead of his time and laid foundation for the success of Macintosh, iPhone and iMac.
The services of Steve Jobs go well beyond producing some exemplary products; he defined just how a perfect design should be in the world of computers today. He adopted some enduring ideals and brought to us the heights of innovation, leaving behind him a trail of creative minds who are taking his legacy forward.