Originally Posted by RichL
Overhauling the UI for an existing and popular platform is the hardest thing to do in UI design, IMO.
It's fairly easy to create a clean and user-friendly UI when you're working from a clean slate. However, as the platform matures, features get bolted on that the original UI designers never envisioned. These new features are often not 100% compatible with the existing UI idioms and compromises have to be made. This happens to every user interface eventually and iOS is no exception.
But even a messy UI is sometimes preferable to a UI overhaul. Microsoft has tried UI overhauls several times with Windows and Office and it's always been a disaster. Legacy apps don't fit the new UI idioms and users, who are often not tech-savvy, have to learn a scary new UI.
If anyone can do it, it's Apple though.
There seems to be two camps of opinions. Those who want an updated aesthetic experience and those who want improved UI.
I don't think it's outdated. It just works for me...but there's always room for improvement. I'm just waiting for the next Snow Leopard or Mountain Lion. I could really care less how it looks (except for the fact that there are way too many blue-colored apps on both iOS and OS X), just that it work as well as my first experience on my first iPhone. What irritates me more than words can say is when they start moving around features and functions that i'm so used to tapping that i could do it with my eyes closed.
Personally, if you know anything about how Apple develops anything you'll know that they look at a million-and-one options and tediously scrutinize every little details before an initial release. Jobs even helped develop a better looking set of Fonts for the first Mac. Point is, which this kind of scrutiny over the little details, they really get it right the first time. All that's left are really minor updates and polish. They rarely add anything radically new release over release. They wait until there's something good to contribute, again going over every little detail until they get it right. They're famous for getting it right the first time. However one might say they're not perfect (Mobile Me, etc...).
So what's left to do? My hopes are for improved web-services (iCloud, Maps, Siri) Fix the things that need improvement first, then wrap it up in a nice package. One thing on my wish list would be to treat the spotlight search screen more like Dashboard on the Mac. Put weather, stocks, clock, calc, etc. on that blank screen. Keep the search bar (even though i know no one that actually uses spotlight at all).
Addition: I'd also like to see the Dictionary App from OS X make its way to iOS. I use it all the time as a go-to Wikipedia App on my Mac. The official Wiki app for iOS is nice, but it's painfully slow to load and search. The Wiki on the Dictionary App is like lightning. I'd also like to see some of the Mac Safari Multi-touch gestures make its ways to iOS.
Aesthetically speaking though, they could improve how the app icons look between iOS and OS X. I'd they start with making the icons look the same across platforms. They kind of do already but have minor differences that seem like an obvious quick fix.
Settings App vs. System Preferences
Blue iTunes icon vs. Purple (iTunes store, and podcasts app) and Orange (Music App) in iOS
Mail app envelope vs. Mail app stamp.
Messages app is blue in OS X and the bubbles look too round vs. Green and rounded squares in iOS.
Etc, etc., etc....
Edited by antkm1 - 3/18/13 at 7:19am