Fortune asked experts what product designs they consider truly great, and Apple features very prominently in the responses. iPhone and Mac captured the top two places in the list of 100, and has four products in the top 20.
They beat out some other amazing designs, from Lego bricks and the 747 to the Apollo 11 spacecraft.
Apple takes a big share of Fortune’s ‘The greatest designs of modern times’ list
Back in 1959, Fortune surveyed designers to compile a list of the 100 best products of the modern era. Sixty years later, the magazine asked the IIT Institute of Design to repeat the survey. The school polled “educators, influencers, freelance designers, and corporate design teams” to compile the list of “The greatest designs of modern times.”
The experts agreed that the iPhone should top this list. Not for any particular model, but because each successive one keeps “relentlessly pushing the envelope of hardware and software design.”
The original Macintosh did almost as well. In this case, the award went to the original version from 1984. “It changed the way we relate to a computer,” said one of the experts, Johan Redstrom, a professor at Umeå University.
Also in the top twenty are the iPod by Jonathan Ive and his team, which tenth place on Fortune’s list. The MacBook Pro from Ive and co. appears in 14th place.
Other Apple products that were recognized are the App Store at 22nd place, iOS at 29th place, Apple Watch at 46th place and Apple Pay in 64th place.
It’s not all Apple
Apple’s big rival Google received the rare honor of making the list twice. Its home page came in third in Fortune’s ranking of great designs. And Google Maps is in 11 place.
Apps and services that virtually all iPhone users are well familiar with also appear in this ranking of top designs. Uber came in 7th place, and Netflix was next on the list in 8th place, for example. Spotify is at 23rd place.