Apple axes Maps chap as Jony Ive takes over software design

4 years ago

Apple announced Monday that iOS chief Scott Forstall would be leaving the company. While most commenters seem happy to see him go, its worth noting that Apple is parting ways with one of the people who turned it into the worlds most powerful tech company.

Forstall was reportedly difficult to work with, according to The New York Times (hey, so was Steve Jobs) and even refused to sign an apology letter penned by CEO Tim Cook over the Maps debacle. News of his departure was met by quiet jubilation by some at Apple, according to other reports. And with Jony Ive now in charge of the look and feel of products Apple-wide, some are hoping this means a move toward more streamlined, elegant UIs for Apple and the end of the silly skeuomorphic design that Forstall reportedly preferred, like the fake stitching and leather of so many iOS apps.

But Forstall was about way, way more than just the look of Calendar and Contacts. And to focus only on those would be to ignore some landmark innovations he helped shepherd to market during his 15 years at Apple, projects that fundamentally changed both desktop and mobile computing. Heres a look at his five greatest contributions.

So what does this mean for future Apple products? The look of iOS and OS X may be refreshed and brought closer together, for a start. Under Forstall`s tenure, iOS featured a heavily skeuomorphic aesthetic. Skeuomorphism involves making the interface look like real things: the ebook app looks like a bookshelf and a paperback, for example, while the Notes app looks like a pad of notepaper, complete with page-turning effects.

Are you happy with the change? Comment your opinions!

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