A little over a couple of years ago, Jony Ive, a name known for commanding Apple’s design teams, handed over managerial duties to take on a new role with the company.
In 2015, Jony Ive changed his job description at Apple, effectively taking a “Chief Design Officer” position that was created specifically for him. At the time, Ive handed over the day-to-day managerial duties over to Alan Dye (in charge of the user interface teams) and Richard Howarth (leading up the industrial design teams). However, a recent change to Apple’s leadership website indicates that some more changes have taken place.
Both the profiles for Howarth and Dye have been removed completely, indicating that they are no longer in day-to-day control of the design decisions at Apple. The company has indeed brought back its design chief to watch over the daily routine for the design teams.
Ive has not been completely separated from design at Apple. Instead of working on the products that are adopted by millions of people around the globe, Ive has been helping to design the new Apple retail stores all over the globe, which, along with executive Angela Ahrendts, have undergone huge transformations in just about every category conceivable. Ive has also been leading the charge with the design of the Apple Park campus.
The return of Jony Ive is a big deal, as far as daily design is concerned. It will be interesting to see in the future how Ive’s return will impact the products we see coming down the pipeline from Apple.