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eobet

Why Is The Iphone Design So Bad?

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Guest DCrux

I don't know why you have to waste time typing new comments when cutting and pasting comments about the original iPod introduction work just about as well.

 

"No wireless? Less space than a Nomad? Lame"; "I don't see many sales"; "Unbelievably poor price/performance ratio"

 

I think, simply based on history, Apple may not be the smartest, the best, the perfect ...but that's the way to bet. The mobile phone market is dominated by bad design. At this point the product is irrelevant, the trail of failed design criticisms is the crux. You just can't lose (often) betting a design-based product in a field saturated with technology-based competitors.

 

Apple's real secret: Competition which habitually dismisses and discounts design in favor of raw spec superiority -- the only thing that fits into the spreadsheet -- and rampant discounting. Apple is designing products out of a mind set the competition can't even fathom. And it's not like there aren't alternatives that could offer a real challenge. It's just that nobody is going to fund them because they can't see the price point supporting something like the Onyx. Apple has the only managment which understands design thinking, in an ocean of MBAs and Engineers.

 

That's why you'll see concept cars Ford and GM put out for publicity -- but can't actually buy the killer concept designs. It's not that they can't get great designers, or run out and buy great design, they just can't make it work or justify it for a production run.

 

I'd like to see what Apple will roll out as the services end, iPhone isn't the place to look for Apple to stumble, Cingular is. Much of the misunderstanding of Apple design is focus on features and specs, and whatever fits in a spreadsheet cell, not on the ecosystem built of services, integration and behavior (features working in concert). These design-by-spreadsheet companies are looking at product contstruction, discrete components and feature list comparisons, the same way a 1950s era manufacturer would. Competitors are unable to see a product design. All they can do is component level comparisons.

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I don't know why you have to waste time typing new comments when cutting and pasting comments about the original iPod introduction work just about as well.

 

I might have misunderstood your post, but I'm sorry to say that I don't know who your comments where aimed at, because at least I was talking about the design only, not features.

 

"Apple design" has in the past been something special, almost hypnotical, but with the iPhone, the spell has been broken for me.

 

I saw a Dell Axim in new clothes. I saw something male focused instead of unisex. I saw lines and details which broke the flow of the shapes. I saw a piece of technology, not design.

 

But it seems that I'm the only one who think that, for the first time, Jonathan Ives has failed.

 

(However, on the software side, it seems that Apple design prevails, so Steve Jobs' touch is still there.)

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(I'll still stick to something else than iTunes to put mp3's and video on it though..)

 

Why?

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I'm guessing you are male. Have you asked any females what they think about the new design?

 

My wife wants one as well. I do think the black and chrome is a bit 'Sony PSP'-ish though. I thought it'd be white, and have a scroll wheel.

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Guest superbad

eobet, I actually agree with you that the physical design of this device is just OK. That said, it's a rectangular prism with some rads and a screen filling almost an entire side. There isn't that much you can really do with it, apart from alter the colors and materials. Black and chrome is a surprisingly conventional choice, but maybe they had reasons for that too. I think the real point is that the shell isn't going to affect sales to a measurable degree. Even if you're not crazy about it, it's good enough. In this case it's what's inside that counts.

 

cash68- Everyone in the world thought it would have a scroll wheel. It's a telling lesson about their process that it doesn't. Watching the interface in action, what they came out with makes the scrollwheel look like a crude blunt instrument.

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"why is the ihone so bad?"

 

scrathes? fingerprints?

 

read in a mobile phone mag that what makes smartphones Jobs refered to smart, is that you can install your own software on it, different aps and stuff like that. on iphone you cant. but they have widgets, i hope those can be 3rd part and not just apple official. must mention though that same mag said in another article that "ihpone didnt offer anything new, but as usual an exciting design!" can't really agree with that..

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Guest Cid008

I dont think the design of the iphone is different then Apple general design. They began to promote black with the Ipod, softwares, and even their website since a while... Personally, I dont like the iphone because it have too much features but i think the design is well done. What do you do if the mp3 player stop working? you send your "mp3 player/video player/phone/pda/game console to them and you have nothing anymore... I prefer to have my Nintendo DS, ipod, pda, cell phone in my bag. It take more place but if the ipod stop working, I can continue to make phonecalls...

 

P.S. sorry for my english B)

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iPhone didn't offer anything new? Name one device that allows for that type of touch interface?

 

I personally use a piece of crap samsung phone, but if anything has ever made me want to upgrade it's the iphone.

 

The design of it is simple, it's hard to do much with a screen and one button, and making it an elaborate form would be against everything Apple stands for.

 

Maybe one day I'll be able to afford one.

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Guest DCrux

Bruce Tognazzini does a great interaction design analysis The iPhone User Experience: A First Look. Tog looks at the device like a interaction designer, rather than a consumer, and turns up some nice observations -- pro and con. Also has a nice design-based discussion of multi touch.

 

Since it adds considerably to the signal of the thread, it deserves a mention.

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I think that article definately does a good job of summing it up. By no means is it perfect, and by no means are many of these technologies new, but thats what Apple (and all of us as designers) aims to do: Combine all of these existing technologies into an innovative product.

 

I can already see future versions of the iPhone to implement many of Apples other niche's including portable iChat video conferencing (needs more wifi bandwidth), a GPS for the maps, as well as Photo and video features.

 

The interface will continue to improve, as will the hardware aspects (reliablity, battery life, materials).

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Could we please get back to talking about the design of the hardware itself? I'll try to update my renders on the main page soon with some new variants (and also update my nit-picks), but I'd like to see renders from others as well of what they want to "fix" with the iPhone.

 

I just found out about this and I think that for once, someone managed to overshine Apple's design:

 

http://www.lgpradaphone.com/

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Guest Hazdaz

I RARELY get 'excited' about a new high-tech device - mostly because I love technology, and thus few things really make me go "wow"... but I do have to admit, that seeing the first few images and videos of the iPhone and I did indeed go "wow".

 

The design itself is simple beyond belief - and I think that is the whole point of the device - hide all the buttons and commands that you don't need... until you need them. No need for buttons that has 50 functions attached to them, when you can tailor each function with it's own set of commands and buttons. And honestly, something like this is to be expected from a company like Apple. Their main business in the computer world is an OS with a User Interface that has been refined over many years to be quite fluid and easy to use. Translate that functionality - and intuitiveness - onto everyday devices like music players and now phones.

 

Very smart move.

 

However, having said all that, I do have large reservations about it's total lack of feedback in terms of touch. Of course there is not really much you can do to resolve that, so I hope they are at least dealing with it as best as possible.

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Guest unni

i have to agree that the interface looks really cool. and i really hope it works that way..but i have a feeling tht the actual function of a fone is slightly compromised since SMSing and dialling no.s might just be an issue.

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