Apple’s Sir Jonathan Ive: The iMan cometh

“Sir Jonathan Ive, Jony to his friends, is arguably one of the world’s most influential Londoners,” Mark Prigg reports for The Evening Standard. “The 45-year-old was born in Chingford — and went to the same school as David Beckham. He met his wife, Heather Pegg, while in secondary school. They married in 1987, have twin sons and now live in San Francisco.”
“As Apple’s senior vice-president of industrial design, he is the driving force behind the firm’s products, from the Mac computer to the iPod, iPhone and, most recently, the iPa,” Prigg reports. “He spoke exclusively to the Evening Standard from the firm’s headquarters.”

Q: What are your goals when setting out to build a new product?
A: Our goals are very simple — to design and make better products. If we can’t make something that is better, we won’t do it.

Q: Why has Apple’s competition struggled to do that?
A: That’s quite unusual, most of our competitors are interesting in doing something different, or want to appear new – I think those are completely the wrong goals. A product has to be genuinely better. This requires real discipline, and that’s what drives us – a sincere, genuine appetite to do something that is better. Committees just don’t work, and it’s not about price, schedule or a bizarre marketing goal to appear different – they are corporate goals with scant regard for people who use the product.

Q: Users have become obsessively attached to Apple products. Why?
A: When I used a Mac I had a keen awareness of the values of those who made it. I think people’s emotional connection to our product is that they sense our care, and the amount of work that has gone into creating it.

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