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iOS 7 design changes remain in flux, likely to see major revisions before release

post #1 of 164
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Much has been said, both positive and negative, about the look of Apple's iOS 7, though new information reveals the design showed off at WWDC on Monday was merely a work in progress, meaning those initial impressions are likely to change in the months ahead.

iOS 7


According to The Next Web, people familiar with Apple's latest mobile operating system said the iOS 7 beta, as well as the preview shown at the WWDC keynote on Monday, is a "mid-stride" snapshot of the work being done behind closed doors.

The pace is so quick that some of the builds used to present the OS on stage two days ago were later versions of what was seeded to developers in the iOS 7 beta. It can't be confirmed which feature sets are more advanced, though the beta version is slightly inconsistent with the OS demoed on Monday by software engineering head Craig Federighi.

The fact that iOS 7 will change before it is released seems obvious in that the software currently in the hands of developers are beta versions meant for testing. However, while backend and UI tweaks are expected to change for early build software, the radically different new design language of iOS 7 is also reportedly largely under construction.

Interestingly, Apple's senior vice president of Industrial Design Jony Ive, who is now also the head of the company's Human Interaction section, called on in-house marketing design teams to flesh out the much ballyhooed first party app icons.

The sources said both print and web design personnel laid down a framework of color palettes and a general "look," which Ive's app designers used as guidelines to produce what was seen in the iOS 7 preview. As with operational facets of the OS, these are also works in progress.

Apple CEO Tim Cook said iOS 7 is the biggest change to iOS since the first iPhone was introduced in 2007, and from a design perspective that rings true. Ive and his team have managed to dismantle almost every theme and nuance that the OS has amassed over the preceding six years and six generations. From skeuomorphic iconography to UI and UX, the new iOS 7 tears down almost everything, replacing it with a clean, if not controversial, design. Apple has managed, at least in these early builds, to achieve a feel that is at once completely new and wholly familiar.
post #2 of 164

I wouldn't mind them toning down the crayola colours a bit

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post #3 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post

Much has been said, both positive and negative, about the look of Apple's iOS 7, though new information reveals the design showed off at WWDC on Monday was merely a work in progress, meaning those initial impressions are likely to change in the months ahead.
 
...
According to The Next Web, people familiar with Apple's latest mobile operating system said the iOS 7 beta, as well as the preview shown at the WWDC keynote on Monday, is a "mid-stride" snapshot of the work being done behind closed doors.
...
Interestingly, Apple's senior vice president of Industrial Design Jony Ive, who is now also the head of the company's Human Interaction section, called on in-house marketing design teams to flesh out the much ballyhooed first party app icons.

The sources said both print and web design personnel laid down a framework of color palettes and a general "look," which Ive's app designers used as guidelines to produce what was seen in the iOS 7 preview. As with operational facets of the OS, these are also works in progress.

 

No surprise. This is very much an unfinished product. It's impressive that they pulled off such a successful keynote given the status of iOS7. 

 

It's wonderful that they are developing unifying themes across all departments. As mentioned previously, this portends an awesome iPhone 6, which will be more fully integrated with iOS8. 

 

I do wish they would consider making their website more responsive. As someone else mentioned (would give credit where it's due but I don't remember who it was), a company that makes more mobile devices than anyone else should realize that their website needs to be mobile-friendly.

post #4 of 164
This Ive fella, pretty smart chap.
post #5 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by PhilBoogie View Post

This Ive fella, pretty smart chap.

Indeed. Cooks' gambit paid off.

post #6 of 164

There's a fair chunk of time between now and release, but that kind of time goes quick.  I can't imagine more than 1 or 2 big changes by then.

 

That being said, I expect to see a significant number of point releases following the 7.0 release.  Something this big, they can't afford to not iterate immediately.

post #7 of 164
Yeah there are some crazy things going on. For example, mail has the darker blue at the top, but the app store has it at the bottom.
post #8 of 164
Wow, it kind if makes sense to me now why some things in iOS 7 seem a little different from what was gown. For example the "new" Siri voices at are supposed to be present are nowhere to be found yet. It's still using the same voice as before, and I haven't been able to find an option to change it.
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post #9 of 164
For the love of God and all things holy, let them change the font. Helvetica Nueue Ultra Light, particularly when it's white on a light background, is going to kill my eyes.

I can't read half the screenshots. I have to squint to read the white on blue text messages--and that's really my go-to Ap. My eyes aren't that bad, but I'm not going to get bifocals so that I can use my phone.

Helvetica Nueue Thin or even Light would be so much better.
post #10 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by stelligent View Post

No surprise. This is very much an unfinished product. It's impressive that they pulled off such a successful keynote given the status of iOS7. 

It's wonderful that they are developing unifying themes across all departments. As mentioned previously, this portends an awesome iPhone 6, which will be more fully integrated with iOS8. 

I do wish they would consider making their website more responsive. As someone else mentioned (would give credit where it's due but I don't remember who it was), a company that makes more mobile devices than anyone else should realize that their website needs to be mobile-friendly.
Yep I think all those rumors of iOS being behind schedule were true. My sense is Apple new they had to do something different now even if its an unfinished product. Going another year with the iOS 6 UI was not an option. This makes me wonder if we will see a lot more point releases after iOS 7 goes live.
post #11 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by stelligent View Post

 

I do wish they would consider making their website more responsive. As someone else mentioned (would give credit where it's due but I don't remember who it was), a company that makes more mobile devices than anyone else should realize that their website needs to be mobile-friendly.

 

Yeah, interesting point. Their website is a strange dichotomy. Lots of white space, so that works with the new, modern iOS 7. But then there's that glossy, static title bar on top that hangs on to the past.

 

I bet they modernize their layout. Everything else is getting a refresh. Their portal to our wallets might as well join the party.

post #12 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Jjaro View Post

Wow, it kind if makes sense to me now why some things in iOS 7 seem a little different from what was gown. For example the "new" Siri voices at are supposed to be present are nowhere to be found yet. It's still using the same voice as before, and I haven't been able to find an option to change it.

It's in the release notes. There's a bug note stating they're not included in this build.

 

It's dev software. Release notes matter. Read 'em and prosper.

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post #13 of 164

Biggest problem is that new icons look like from very very cheap Chinese copy of some Android phone (the icons are seriously ugly). irked.gif

Another thing is that new GUI is quite bright and option to choose the Theme between "Bright" and "Dark" would be nice to have ("Dark" would look better on black iPhones).

post #14 of 164
Good to know they will work on the icons. The only other thing that stood out to me is the rightmost image in this article, the way tabs are handled in safari. The 3D file system feels out of place with the rest of the OS, don't understand their thinking on that one. Reminds me of coverflow, which I never personally liked.

Almost everything else looks great to me, cant wait to use it.
post #15 of 164
I love the new Diet Coke Style. Here in Germany Diet Coke is also named LIGHT and this is, what I feel at iOS 7
post #16 of 164
There are many design issues they need to go over. Furthermore, third party developers need to go over their apps as well. Compiling with Xcode 5 beta moves all pre iOS 7 UI elements to iOS 7. This is big issue for developers who used the old UI elements along with custom designs since they have to redesign their entire apps. Apple recommend developers change their designs to iOS 7 then work on iOS 6 compatible design elements. This is going to be interesting.
Quote:
Originally Posted by brutus009 View Post

There's a fair chunk of time between now and release, but that kind of time goes quick.  I can't imagine more than 1 or 2 big changes by then.

That being said, I expect to see a significant number of point releases following the 7.0 release.  Something this big, they can't afford to not iterate immediately.

If my memory is right, last year they released new beta every 2 weeks. The time between the last beta and GM was almost a month though.
post #17 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by John Lowell View Post

For the love of God and all things holy, let them change the font. Helvetica Nueue Ultra Light, particularly when it's white on a light background, is going to kill my eyes.

I can't read half the screenshots. I have to squint to read the white on blue text messages--and that's really my go-to Ap. My eyes aren't that bad, but I'm not going to get bifocals so that I can use my phone.

Helvetica Nueue Thin or even Light would be so much better.

Don't worry, There is an option in the settings to make the font bigger system wide.
post #18 of 164

There will undoubtedly be rapid iterations on the UI front during the beta cycle. Personally, I find myself liking a lot of the changes but many are still unrefined. Color schemes and icon designs are largely subjective, but some of the things like transparency, font sizing, and unclear button elements actually cause problems with usability. I suspect they will also need to get more extreme on the dynamic elements which are meant to compensate for wallpaper color schemes. Put a white wallpaper on the device and you will really see the problem.

post #19 of 164
It should have been obvious that this wasn't a final design, and that more changes would occur before the final release and launch date.
post #20 of 164
The Safari navigation icons immediately struck me as half-baked (especially the Share icon that looks more appropriate for an elevator) and no where near a design language that Jony Ive would let out of Cupertino.
post #21 of 164

You know, I really don't care all that much about how much detail goes into an icon, as long as I can figure out what the icon is trying to convey without too much difficulty.  I want real, actual functionality improvements.  Case in point - you shouldn't have to download a 3rd-party app in order to send email to a group from iOS. That just seems pretty basic to me, something that should be a standard feature.  Shifting gears to OS X, why not bring back scroll arrows to those of us who still use a mouse?  Every time I try and work on a spreadsheet and have to drag the scroll "thumb" just the right amount to do what I could've easily have done with one or two clicks of a down/up scroll arrow, I curse the Apple "soup Nazi(s)" that made the decision to drop this functionality.

 

By the way, with relatively large improvements coming to the built-in Photos app (iOS), what will happen to the paid (and rarely updated) iPhoto app for iOS?  Whither and die?

post #22 of 164

and so the ugly Safari icon changed into a beautiful swan ...  

 

It seems obvious that the OS is unfinished when you consider that the sharing icon (of all things, the very IMPORTANT used many times a day sharing icon), is completely different looking depending on which part of the OS you are in.  That's just ridiculously wrong.  It violates every rule of good UI design as well as design in general.  

 

Personally, after looking at it a lot, the only things I really hate now are the parts where they use some grating brilliant neon colour that you just can't get away from.  Like if you use their calendar at all, you have to be okay with brilliant raw, RED highlights.  WTF?  I mean what if you just hate that colour?  You have to find some other calendar to use?  Why? The BLUE they use on iTunes is just as bad.  

 

 I don't get what they are thinking with that.  At the very least there should be an option to tone them down, or just use a generic grey highlight or something.  

 

This is the way OS X has been for ages.  They don't usually give colour/theme configuration options to end users (and for good reason), but they always include a default "greyed down" choice for those that don't want glaring raw jazzy colours in their face all day long.  

post #23 of 164
Someone on MacRumors posted a pic of a translucent home screen doc. I think it was a screen shot from a dev session. It's possible we might see that in beta 2.
post #24 of 164

I hate to keep going back to the well, but if Steve Jobs had one thing going for him it was his being a major stickler about the tiniest of details, even down to the icon level. Steve had a point of view. Jony Ive has a point of view and philosophy that applies to industrial design and his ideas on usability that must be translated into the graphics side. There might be time, but graphic design for Ive is like learning a new language in a very short amount of time. It's not possible to become fluent compared to someone who has been doing the job for 20 or 30 years. It would be fair if Ive gave the final sign-off (remember Jobs' only art training involved typography), but primarily relied on a very experienced UI and/or icon designer to do the necessary groundwork.


Edited by SpamSandwich - 6/12/13 at 3:31pm

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post #25 of 164
In my opinion, iOS 7 as it looks now looks as if it was designed for a 10 year old girl. It is butt-ugly and makes me nauseated to look at it.
post #26 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

I hate to keep going back to the well, but if Steve Jobs had one thing going for him it was his being a major stickler about the tiniest of details, even down to the icon level. Steve had a point of view. Jony Ive has a point of view and a philosophy on design that applies to industrial design and usability that must be translated into the graphics side. There might be time, but graphic design for Ive is like learning a new language in a very short amount of time. It's not possible to become fluent compared to someone who has been doing the job for 20 or 30 years. It would be fair if Ive gave the final sign-off, but primarily relied on a very experienced UI and/or icon designer to lay down the groundwork.
People seem to be forgetting about some of the great new functionality that's finally coming to iOS. One I just found out about today is Notification center providing traffic information based on places you frequent. Federighi seemed like he was rushing a bit during the demo so I'll bet there's a lot of cool features (especially for 3rd party developers) that he didn't get a chance to show off. These UI problems are fixable. Even if they don't all get fixed during the betas nothing is stopping Apple from doing point releases for updates. Google updates Android apps more than once a year, why can't Apple?
post #27 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by krabicka3 View Post

Biggest problem is that new icons look like from very very cheap Chinese copy of some Android phone (the icons are seriously ugly). irked.gif

Another thing is that new GUI is quite bright and option to choose the Theme between "Bright" and "Dark" would be nice to have ("Dark" would look better on black iPhones).

 

Actually, I find myself liking the new app icons... except for Safari.  That one is just inexcusable.

 

Anyway, I quote you because I'm really hoping for a 'dark' theme to go on the black iPhone... though I don't expect it to really happen.

post #28 of 164
This is good news.

Impressions after a day of use:

Lock screen is beautiful. The thin Helvitca font variant works well here. The entire screen slides. A larger target is always good.

Password lock screen is elegant. It's grown on me.

Notifications panel looks great. But "all" doesn't really show all (doesn't show "Today.") That's a little odd.

Control centre works fine and looks alright. Though it took a split-second of guessing what a couple of things do. If it takes *me* any time at all, new users will take longer.

Parallax scrolling is sorta nifty.

Safari functionality is great. Design is wonky. The targets are words. Or arrows? Or words? Thin blue font on a white background. Looks oddly out of place and the thin font all-round is infuriating. It all looks too "texty", with ill-defined, poorly contrasted targets.

Some icons are wireframe spectres. Others are coloured. Some wireframe icons are found as targets in menus. Some are coloured. Others are not. At any rate, these icons need work.

Folder backgrounds look ridiculous on the icon grid. Very jarring. Should at least be same colour on grid as when zoomed.

A lot of Android elements look like crap. They've been imported into iOS for some reason.

In terms of functionality, I see some nice improvements. But with only a few exceptions, the OS needs an aesthetic do-over.
post #29 of 164
This is nothing new. Watch the 2007 iPhone introduction (the 720p version) and then... oh, right, most people don't have an iPhone OS 1-capable device, do they... Anyway, you can see some big changes from the demo version and what shipped. That was six months, and this gap will be four, so it's quite possible that iOS 7 will look markedly different from beta 1.
Quote:
Originally Posted by krabicka3 View Post

Biggest problem is that new icons look like from very very cheap Chinese copy of some Android phone

Nope.

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post #30 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post


Google updates Android apps more than once a year, why can't Apple?

 

Blasphemy.

post #31 of 164
I really haven't done much with iOS 7 because my old eyes and fat fingers don't work very well on a small phone -- I'm waiting for the iPad release. But, what I've seen so far works okay -- about average for the first beta. You can mitigate much of the UI issues by setting a darker home screen and a larger font size.

On the other hand, OS X Mavericks rocks…. All the resource saving components mentioned in the demo really make my iMac 27 seem like a new machine. It it seems rock solid, too!

I've been playing with Apple Maps 3-D Flyover full-screen on the desktop, and comparing it to New (beta) Google Maps/Earth. No contest!

I'm Jazzed!
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post #32 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rogifan View Post


People seem to be forgetting about some of the great new functionality that's finally coming to iOS. One I just found out about today is Notification center providing traffic information based on places you frequent. Federighi seemed like he was rushing a bit during the demo so I'll bet there's a lot of cool features (especially for 3rd party developers) that he didn't get a chance to show off. These UI problems are fixable. Even if they don't all get fixed during the betas nothing is stopping Apple from doing point releases for updates. Google updates Android apps more than once a year, why can't Apple?

 

The new functionality is fine and a welcome update. Remember, Jobs insisted things be designed, redesigned and re-redesigned before ever being shown to the public. He rarely allowed anything shown until it was ready. I think they should've done the same thing here.

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post #33 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by GadgetCanadaV2 View Post

I wouldn't mind them toning down the crayola colours a bit

 

I dont mind that so much. I just want better icons for Game Center, Safari and Settings. Those three are fugly. Give us back the old share sheet icon so the grannies that won't figure out what they are looking for. 

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post #34 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by ghostface147 View Post

Yeah there are some crazy things going on. For example, mail has the darker blue at the top, but the app store has it at the bottom.

 

i would rather they kill the gradients all together

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post #35 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpamSandwich View Post

The new functionality is fine and a welcome update. Remember, Jobs insisted things be designed, redesigned and re-redesigned before ever being shown to the public. He rarely allowed anything shown until it was ready. I think they should've done the same thing here.
Yep and then they would have waited another year and people would have complained that the UI looks the same, and Apple can't innovate, is doomed, etc.

I think we need to reserve judgement until closer to release. If we get a final beta that looks exactly like this then yeah I will grudgingly agree they should have waited until it was more finished,
post #36 of 164
Quote:
Originally Posted by charlituna View Post

I dont mind that so much. I just want better icons for Game Center, Safari and Settings. Those three are fugly. Give us back the old share sheet icon so the grannies that won't figure out what they are looking for. 
Considering some of the inconsistencies in app icons perhaps some of them are placeholders. Or Apple is already working on redesigns. I've got to believe feedback is getting up to Federighi and Ive. There's no way Apple is oblivious to the dislike of the app icons. This article is proof of that.
post #37 of 164
I hope this bodes well for better-looking icons. Many seem like mock-ups rather than finished. I guess they need less regression testing, so can change later - while fundamental navigation metaphors (hierarchy in layers and the 'rule book') are much less likely to change much from now to release - and through future releases.

In my years of using OSX, there has been significant evolution of icon and widget look & feel but (thankfully) less change in the fundamental structure. Hopefully this will allow them to evolve the superficial L&F over time based on the structure.

This will also allow the OS to reflect the evolving design language of the hardware.
post #38 of 164
I posted on Facebook how it pisses me off people's comments on the design but great point here which I did not consider - iOS 7 is in beta so things can be changed. The feedback from bitching designers can be considered but the objective to simplify and purify the OS is completely necessary. Icons are easy to change.

Someone said that white text against light backgrounds will be tough on eyes especially with thin font which I like. Without drop shadow then text could blend. This was one of the main things I thought of.

One recommendation I think Apple should consider is for their apps or even the OS they should give us a few options in the OS to choose color palettes for the font so that we the users have some sense of customization of the OS. I know this would be an incredibly powerful incentive for some people without sacrificing the new ways of navigating the OS. Basically, they provide us options for skins on our apps.
post #39 of 164
I hate the new look. White-white-white for header, content and footer. What the ....?
And the purple tones, the icons... So kiddie
post #40 of 164
Ive needs to poll pundits and industry analysts, and get 100% quorum before iOS 7 is released. He also needs not a single soul not to hate the new Safari icon; he heard one dude in south Nebraska doesn't care for it as it "looks like a bison's ass after it's been bit by a dirigible," and is flying out there to speak with him.

Ive cares very much about what armchair analysts and basement graphic designers with a Wordpress account think. He wants to impress them mostly.
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