In April, Apple introduced 2021’s first new devices: 12.9-inch and 11-inch M1 iPad Pro models and 24-inch M1 iMac. Although the iPad Pro has the same design as its 2020 variants, Apple redesigned the iMac. And now it is reported that former Apple’s chief of Design Jony Ives was involved in computer’s designing.
Jony Ives is a famous British-American industrial, product, and architectural designer who left Apple after 27 years in 2019 to start his own design firm, LoveForm. During his time at the company, Ives co-designed iPhone, iPad, iMac, and iPod. He also contributed to the architectural design of Apple Park and Apple Stores. It only seems suitable that he was involved in the restructuring of the 2021 iMac with modern design language in retro-colors.
Former Apple COD Jony Ives contributed to redesigning the new M1 iMac
In its review of the new 24-inch M1 iMac, Wired explained that Apple brought back the color themes of the older iMac G3 (launched in 1998) in the new 2021 models.
When Apple first revealed the new iMac’s styling in April, it was immediately apparent it had a design hit on its hands. Apple also knew what it was doing with the launch video. Multiple dancing 11.5mm thin iMacs in green, yellow, orange, pink, purple, blue, and silver pirouetted across the screen in a far from subtle reference to the original “Colors” ad for the old G3 iMac.
And who would better redesign the computer, than the man who had originally designed it with former CEO Steve Jobs.
But Apple has another reason to reference this old campaign. Jony Ives was involved in the design of this new iMac, despite having left Apple back in 2019. Hardware design is a long process, so perhaps it’s not surprising that Ive’s fingerprints are all over this new desktop. But interestingly, Apple would not confirm or deny if he worked on the 2021 iMac after he left the company- just that he worked on it.
DigitalTrends gave us behind the scenes details of who two “odd” men worked together to salvage the company after Jobs returned to Apple as CEO.
Steve Jobs had just returned as interim CEO and had to act fast to save the company. As recorded by the New Yorker, when Jobs first met head designer Jony Ive, the new CEO didn’t mince words. In his trademark brash fashion, Jobs told him, “Fuck, you’ve not been very effective, have you?” For his part, Ive had his resignation letter in his pocket.
Yet by the end of the day, Ive was excited to be working with Jobs. The two bonded over their maniacal obsession for design and their shared nature of being “a little bit odd,” in Ive’s words. That same day, they started work on what would become the original iMac.
They wanted to create a machine that took the fear and boredom out of computers, by making them colorful and putting all the components in one device to give users more than just faster speed and performance. In an interview Ives said,
“The computer industry is creatively bankrupt, with companies too afraid to break out of the status quo to consider anything other than speed and performance. We could make a computer look like a grapefruit,” Ive said. Anything to show people that computers were not to be feared.
“We tried to do things in a simple, elegant way. Instead of requiring users to connect a computer tower to a monitor, the iMac would come in an all-in-one shape, letting you simply plug it in and get started. It was all about removing hurdles that could stop newcomers in their tracks.
It would come in a variety of bright, fun colors, a million miles away from the staid, stale designs of Apple’s competitors. And that outer shell would be translucent, so users could see the insides of the machine, removing their mystery.
And following the same concept of comfort, performance, and personalization, the new M1 iMac comes in 7 different colors and thinner design language to fit more spaces, hello!