Designer behind Apple products knighted

2012-01-01 16:22

Los Angeles - Fans of the clean, inviting look of the iPhone, iPad and other blockbuster Apple products are legion, and that includes Queen Elizabeth II.

The British monarch has awarded a knighthood to Jonathan Paul Ive, a British citizen and head of Apple's design team since the mid-'90s.

Ive received a KBE, short for Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. The honour was announced Saturday for services to design and enterprise.

"To be recognised with this honour is absolutely thrilling and I am both humbled and sincerely grateful," Ive said in a statement.

"I discovered at an early age that all I've ever wanted to do is design. I feel enormously fortunate that I continue to be able to design and make products with a truly remarkable group of people here at Apple."

Ive is credited with helping the late Steve Jobs bring the consumer-electronics company back from the brink of financial ruin in the late 1990s with his whimsical design for the iMac computer, which originally came in bright colors at a time bland shades dominated the PC world.

He later helped transform Apple into a consumer-electronics powerhouse and the envy of Silicon Valley with his designs for the iPod, the iPhone and, most recently, the iPad.

The knighthood is the second royal honour Ive has received. He was awarded a Commander of the British Empire honour in 2006 for achievements in British design and innovation.

Britain's honours are bestowed twice a year by the monarch - at New Year's and on her official birthday in June.

Recipients are selected by committees of civil servants from nominations made by the government and the public.

Most of the honours go to people who are not in the limelight, for services to community or industry, but they also reward a sprinkling of famous faces.

Oscar-nominated actress Helena Bonham Carter and music producer Steve Lillywhite were among those included with Ive in the queen's New Year honours list for 2012.

Ive started out far from Apple's Cupertino, California, headquarters. He grew up outside London and studied design at Newcastle Polytechnic (now Northumbria University) in Newcastle, England.

After finishing school, he co-founded a London-based design company called Tangerine. There, he designed a range of products including combs and power tools. It was through Tangerine that he first got to work with Apple.

In 1992, while Jobs was still in the midst of a 12-year exile from Apple, Ive was hired as a senior designer.

After Jobs returned, he and Ive worked closely, ushering in products that are sleek and stylish, with rounded corners, few buttons, brushed aluminum surfaces and plenty of slick glass.

Apple's pride in this work is evident even in the packaging: Open up any iPhone box, for example, and see Apple proudly proclaim, "Designed by Apple in California."

Six of Ive's works, including the original iPod, are part of the collection at the Museum of Modern Art in New York.

Design, as well as software that makes the gadgets easy to use, is a crucial part of setting Apple products apart from those of its rivals.

Apple didn't make the first music player or smartphone, but it dominated the market by making ones that looked cool and worked well.

Now, Apple's products are more popular than ever, vaulting it past rival Microsoft Corp. in 2010 as the most valuable technology company in the world.

  • goyougoodthing - 2012-01-01 17:18

    It is a pity that Mr Ives stole all his designs from Deiter Rams though:

      dawiej - 2012-01-01 17:58

      Wow.... Realy???? I suppose Ferrari's sleek designs are also stolen from Ford. 4 wheels, steering wheel ? ...... Mmmmmmm

      goyougoodthing - 2012-01-01 18:00

      Read the flipping article you muppet. I do this for a living I know what I am talking about.

      Spyker - 2012-01-01 18:40

      Well.., both Steve Jobs and Bill Gates are not exactly the massively innovative minds, they are often portrayed- and/or perceived to be. Gates stole the "Windows" concept from Jobs (brazenly so). Jobs (and his cronies) in turn cribbed a number of initial (supposed) innovative ideas from Xerox. The realm of bona fide innovative technology often honours the thieves and not the de facto ‘brains’. Eg ‘The Wright Bros’ – not implying they were thieves, they just were not the 1st – a German was. What 'gets' me though: There are little on the planet as worthless as an English knighthood. I know it is supposed to be ‘British’ - but it is actually just English... English financial wealth was gained through common theft (not even creative theft) and maintained through a convenient strategic location. England (today) is just a bank – the rest belongs to the Arabs. Bar the said bank, England is a 3rd World country, as all welfare states are. England’s only tactical contribution to the military realm – viz the essence of the ‘knighthood’, was to formalise COWARDICE. The “contribution” = CONCENTRATION CAMPS. In fact, the Nazi’s openly stated that their concentration camps were modelled on the kind deployed in South Africa, before. So all an English/British knighthood serves, is to honour you as a coward, of the most nefarious kind. So all said and evidently not done, let us ponder for a moment where the world would have been, were it not for the Germans... ...perhaps the caves...

      dawiej - 2012-01-01 18:52

      Hey muppet, i did hence my comments, just because its simmilar, doesnt mean he stole it. According to you jus because something has a slight resemblance to something else it woeld mesn that it is now stolen? Suggest you get a new line of ork i this is what you do full time.

      dawiej - 2012-01-01 18:53

      And oh i see, not many people agree with you either

      goyougoodthing - 2012-01-01 19:03

      Just because people don't agree does not mean I'm not right. Ive himself says his greatest inspiration is Mr Rams. Jonathan Ive is a great designer and a conceptual thinker sure, but a great portion of this has be drawn from Rams, the true genius of design. Look him up sometime.

      goyougoodthing - 2012-01-01 19:05

      Spyker you are right of course. The Germans, the Arabs, who gave us our counting system and kept all the world's knowledge when Europe and especially England were burning people who disagreed with them. The Chinese gave us paper and gunpowder, the Jews their Christian religion, the Romans their alphabet.

      Spyker - 2012-01-01 19:06

      @dawiej.., "...a new line of ork i this is what you do..." "...else it woeld mesn that it is..." "...jus because..." Perhaps yu cin get da Muppits 2 trenslate dee abof 4 ass..? And oh i see, not many people agree with you either... PS: 2012 is but hours in the making and reality has struck already - blindingly so, it seems...

      gareth.rule - 2012-01-02 14:08

      “A good artist imitates, but a great artist steals.” - Picasso.

  • Benmica - 2012-01-01 19:48

    This is a tribute to Steve Jobs...

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