Seven Things You Probably Didn't Know About Apple's Jony Ive

Seven Things You Probably Didn't Know About Apple's Jony Ive

When you think of the magic and mystery of Apple, you think of Steve Jobs. There is no getting around the fact that unlike the heads of other tech companies who are seen as business visionaries and technical geniuses, Jobs had the reputation of an aesthete, a savant who served as the tastemaker to the modern age.

But much of Jobs' success can also be credited to a series of highly successful lieutenants, including Apple's current CEO Tim Cook, and Apple's Senior Vice President of Design Sir Jonathan "Jony" Ive. While Cook may have taken the top job at Apple after Jobs, in terms of personality, it's Ive who is truly Steve's successor. Jony might not be as famously prone to fits of rage and acerbic comments, but like Jobs, the man comes across a perfectionist with an obsession for design.

A recent New Yorker profile on Ive is a fascinating read, but there are some parts in it that you might not expect, such as Ive's continued use of postcards or his long-lasting friendship with Stephen Fry and Chris Martin.

Here are seven things from the profile that really stood out to us:

1. Ive was gifted a 7-inch action figure of himself by his design colleagues at Apple a few years ago, and he keeps it behind his desk. The action figure is also on the lockscreen on Ive's iPhone.


2. After Steve Jobs' death in 2011, Ive bought the late Apple CEO's private jet - a Gulfstream GV - from Jobs' widow Laurene Powell Jobs.


3. Ive was heading design at Apple when Jobs returned to Apple in 1997. When Ive first met Jobs, Ive carried his resignation letter in his pocket, but ended up keeping it there because the two just clicked. When Jobs first saw Ive's lab, he said, "F***, you've not been very effective, have you?" - referring to good ideas that weren't making it out of the company.

4. Ive designed his first tablet for Apple well before the iPad - and even before he joined the company. In 1991, he was working as a design consultant and was hired by Apple to explore mobile computing devices in the run up to the launch of the PowerBook 100. His concept - the Macintosh Folio - featured a stylus and an adjustable angled screen, evoking a drawing board.

5. Growing up in his parents' house in England, Ive had a Dieter Rams-designed Braun MPZ2 Citromatic juicer in the kitchen. Dieter Rams is one of the designers whose work has long been cited as an inspiration for Ive's own designs.


6. One of his many celebrity friends is the director JJ Abrams. Abrams' Star Trek reboot certainly looked all white and shiny like an iPod, but Ive has a part to play in the look of Abrams' upcoming Star Wars film as well. According to Abrams, Ive made some "very specific" suggestions about the design of lightsabres.


7. Ive also feels disappointed with most modern cars, raising our hopes at least that Apple's rumoured car may come to fruition soon. "There are some shocking cars on the road," Ive said in the profile. "One person's car is another person's scenery."


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Further reading: Apple, Jonathan Ive, Jony Ive, Steve Jobs
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