Apple has done it again. Perhaps now even more than ever: the whole world is talking about the iPhone. Some people even want to buy one, not realizing it’s not even going to be on sale for at least six months to a year (depending on where you live).
I’m no Mac nut, nor do I believe in treating companies as if they were religions, but I have always admired Apple’s design-centered products. The iPhone is possibly one of the most clear examples of this practice: it is almost design in physical form.
The whole thing was created with its use in mind, as a central drive for the concept.
Use. Utility. Function. Form. Design.
The thing is logical and intuitive. It looks like it should look: like it works, like you can pick it up and use it, no need to RTFM, unless you really, really want to.
The iPhone is not perfect, for the simple fact that nothing is. But any discussion as to whether or not it is the materialization of a great idea, is purely theoretical: of course it is a great idea; whoever disagrees is merely embarrassed to admit they’re horny just looking at it. People are raving about this product without even having touched it: this is perfect marketing. The product appears so ingenious, so good, so attractive, that it sells itself as an idea, long before it hits the shelves.
Even if the iPhone turns out to be crap, by the time we realize it, we’ll all own one already.
As a designer, it gives me great pleasure to see a product like this being introduced. It helps people see that design is not “doodling”, it is the shaping of ideas into products and solutions. It takes a bit of art, a bit of research, a bit of madness and a lot of freedom. And that, I think, is all behind Apple’s newest gadget.