Rumor: Apple’s Jony Ive to Make His Mark on iOS 7 with a Complete Redesign

Apple has not been the same since the passing of Steve Jobs, and frankly, the company needs to get back to its Jobs-era (part two) drive to innovate while employing artistic, cutting-edge designs. Whether Apple can do the former remains to be seen, but rumors continue to circle concerning the latter.

It sounds as though Apple’s Jony Ive, who is by now a legendary designer in the tech world and was reportedly the man behind the original iPod’s clickwheel design, is stepping up in Job’s absence to make his mark on the company’s upcoming mobile operating system update, iOS 7.

iOS rendering
Artist rendering of the iOS 7 Calendar app (credit: SimplyZesty)

We heard back in February that the iOS 7 UI would be eschewing its iconic skeuomorphism and 3D-like elements in favor of a much “flatter” look--which sounds an awful lot like Windows Phone 8. (Apple copying design ideas from Microsoft? What’s the world coming to?)

Windows Phone 8
Windows Phone 8 UI

According to 9-to-5 Mac, sources that have seen the new UI are calling it ““black, white, and flat all over”, which tickles the imagination. The report also says that Ive is looking to unify the look and thematic feel of all of Apple’s built-in apps, and the lock screen will be cleaner and blacker, with more black-and-white buttons and borders. Gone will be the linen and leather-type backgrounds in the notifications area and in other apps.

iOS 7 will also offer panoramic wallpapers, gradient-less navigation and tab bars, and other simplified design tweaks. New features may include Flick and Vimeo integration and improved in-car Siri and Maps integration.

Current iOS UI

Beyond the simple fact of a radical iOS redesign, this development may shed some light on the working relationship between Ive and Jobs, specifically that Jobs may have pulled rank on Ive when it came to crucial design decisions. Now that Jobs is gone and Ive has a more senior position in the company, the latter’s preferences will be more apparent.

We’ll likely get to see iOS 7’s new look when Apple debuts it at its WWDC event in June.