The current Internet scuttlebutt has it that when Tim Cook takes the stage on Monday for the WWDC keynote, he will not only unveil iOS 7, but a new, flatter ‘look’ for the entire mobile operating system spearheaded by Jony Ive. This would bring the look of iOS closer to modern design principles employed by the likes of Google and Microsoft, and finally flush Scott Forstall’s skeuomorphism turd.
You can find the interactive iOS7 concept here. King explains his thinking when designing the OS:
Based on a combination of leaked photos and the new WWDC app highlighted in our iOS 7 rumour round-up, changes to the OS will likely consist of a flatter aesthetic and less gradients.
Skeuomorphic elements will also be taking a back-seat. For anyone not au fait with the term, skeuomorphism refers to elements imitating reality. This means we can expect the Notes app to look less like a notepad for example, instead, providing a simple, clean, text ready canvas.
This should result in a consistent feel throughout each of Apple’s proprietary apps; with a black headers and tab bars as well as colour-coded accents on buttons and details helping differentiate from one app to the next.
This concept is intended to be a fun way for people to interact with an idea. From a technical point of view, the challenge was to build this entire concept without using any images and instead, building the iPhone, icons and apps solely out of CSS and HTML code.
Personally, I think a lot of people expecting this sort of overhaul of iOS come Monday are in for a pretty big let down. So far, Ive — as Apple’s new head of digital design — has largely contented himself to just turn down the volume on some of the most obviously skeuomorphic design decisions Apple has made recently, like the faux-reel-to-reel in the official Podcasts app. I imagine Jony Ive will continue to work this way, tightening things up rather than throwing them out. That might mean the end of, say, that hideous ‘Marker’ font in the note app, or the pukesome fake Corinthian leather in Calendar, but it’s probably still going to be subtle. What do you think?