Steve Jobs came out really strongly against focus groups. I strongly doubt they use them. Although Apple is the pinnacle of design in the Tech world, they are not above coming up with some terrible designs themselves. Especially when they are in their "realism" phase (they keep yoyo-ing between minimalistic, and realistic designs). A classic example was the old Quicktime (?) volume control knob. A design fiasco.
4/1/11 at 3:10pm