Jonathan Ive

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Sir Jonathan Ive
Jonathan Ive (OTRS).jpg
Jonathan Ive, April 2009
BornJonathan Paul Ive
27 February 1967 (1967-02-27) (age 46)
Chingford, London, England, UK
OccupationSenior Vice President of Design, Apple Inc.
Known forDesign work and innovation at Apple Inc.
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Sir Jonathan Ive
Jonathan Ive (OTRS).jpg
Jonathan Ive, April 2009
BornJonathan Paul Ive
27 February 1967 (1967-02-27) (age 46)
Chingford, London, England, UK
OccupationSenior Vice President of Design, Apple Inc.
Known forDesign work and innovation at Apple Inc.

Sir Jonathan Paul "Jony" (pronounced "jonny"[1]) Ive, KBE RDI (born 27 February 1967)[2] is an English designer and the Senior Vice President of Design at Apple Inc. He oversees the Industrial Design department, and also provides leadership and direction for Human Interface (HI) software teams across the company.[3] He is the designer of many of Apple's products, including the MacBook Pro, iMac, MacBook Air, iPod, iPod Touch, iPhone, iPad, iPad Mini and iOS 7. Steve Jobs considered Ive to be his "spiritual partner at Apple," while Fortune magazine stated in 2010 that Ive's designs have "set the course not just for Apple but for design more broadly."[4][5][6]

Early life[edit]

Ive was born in Chingford, London UK. His father was a silversmith who taught at the local college, "He's a fantastic craftsman, his Christmas gift to me would be one day of his time in his college workshop, during the Christmas break when no one else was there, helping me make whatever I dreamed up."[7]

Ive attended the Chingford Foundation School then Walton High School in Stafford. Once enrolled in Walton, it became clear that he had significant technical and drawing skills. After leaving Walton he studied industrial design at Newcastle Polytechnic (now Northumbria University). Ive had been interested in "drawing and making stuff" since he was a teenager but was unsure about exactly what. After meeting with various design experts he was drawn to product design.[8]

Discovering the Apple Mac after "having a real problem with computers" during his later student years, he said, was a turning point. Fearing he was "technically inept", he felt the Apple user experience was a departure from the computer design at that time.[9]


After finishing his studies at Newcastle Polytechnic, Ive joined a London design startup called Tangerine. His first job was to design a toilet, bidet and sink for a client who ultimately rejected Ive's work due to the corresponding high production cost.[10]

He was commissioned as a consultant in 1992 by Apple's Chief of Industrial Design at the time Robert Brunner, and then became a full-time Apple employee.[11] He designed the second generation of the Newton, the MessagePad110, taking him to Taipei for the first time. Following Jobs's initial departure from Apple, Ive nearly resigned from the company shortly before Jobs's eventual return. Jon Rubinstein, Ive's boss at the time, managed to retain Ive as an employee by explaining that Apple was "going to make history" following the revival of the company.[10]

He became the Senior Vice President of Industrial Design in 1997 after the return of Jobs and subsequently headed the industrial design team responsible for most of the company's significant hardware products.[12] Ive's first design assignment was the iMac; it helped pave the way for many other designs such as the iPod and eventually the iPhone and the iPad.[13] Jobs made design a chief focus of the firm's product strategy, and Ive proceeded to establish the firm’s leading position with a series of functionally clean, aesthetically pleasing, and remarkably popular products.

The work and principles of Dieter Rams, the chief designer at Braun from 1961 until 1995, influenced Ive's work. In Gary Hustwit's documentary film Objectified (2009), Rams says that Apple is one of only a handful of companies existing today that design products according to Rams' ten principles of "good design."[14][15]

Ive runs his own laboratory at Apple, in which he oversees the work of his appointed design team, and he is the only Apple designer with a private office.[8] The majority of Apple employees are not allowed into the laboratory and Ive also refuses to allow his children to enter the laboratory.[10] According to the Jobs biography, Ive's design studio contains foam-cutting and printing machines, while the windows are tinted. Jobs told biographer Walter Isaacson: "He has more operational power than anyone else at Apple except me."[16] Ive has also designed a number of products for other organisations including a Leica camera for a charity auction which set a world auction price for a camera. [17]

On 29 October 2012, Apple announced that "Jony Ive will provide leadership and direction for Human Interface (HI) across the company in addition to his role as the leader of Industrial Design."[18] With the WWDC13 announcement of the iOS7 and Ive's role as principal, the Apple Press information was also updated to reflect his new title: Senior Vice President of Design.

The scheduled publication of an unofficial Ive biography was announced in late 2013. Written by Leander Kahney, who conducted interviews with former Apple designers and executives, the book is titled Jony Ive: The Genius Behind Apple's Greatest Products.[10]

Honours and awards[edit]

A fifth generation iPod, one of Ive's most recognised industrial designs.

In 1999, Ive was named by the MIT Technology Review TR100 one of the top 100 innovators in the world under age 35.[19]

In 2003, he was the winner of the Design Museum's Designer of the Year Award, the first given.[11]

In 2004, he was named the "Most Influential Person on British Culture" by the BBC.[20]

In 2005 The Sunday Times named Ive one of Britain's most influential expatriates.: "Ive may not be the richest or the most senior figure on the list, but he has certainly been one of the most influential as the man who designed the iPod."

A 2006 Macworld magazine poll listed Ive's joining Apple in 1992 as the sixth most significant event in Apple's history, while Dan Moren, a writer at MacUser magazine (a subsidiary of Macworld), suggested in March 2006 that, when the time came for Steve Jobs to step down as the CEO of Apple, Ive would be an excellent candidate for the position, justifying the statement by saying that Ive "embodies what Apple is perhaps most famous for: design."[21] However, Jobs was succeeded by Tim Cook, the company's former COO.[22]

In 2007, the UK edition of GQ magazine named Ive "Product Designer of the Year."[23]

In 2007, Ive received the 2007 National Design Award in the product-design category for his work on the iPhone.[24]

In 2008, he was named the No. 1 "Most Influential Briton in America" by the Daily Telegraph.[25] Creativity Online included Ive in their "Creativity 50" list.[26] The same year, he was awarded the MDA Personal Achievement Award for the design of the iPhone.[27]

In 2009, Ive received an honorary doctorate from the Rhode Island School of Design,[28] and honorary doctor of the Royal College of Art.[29] Also in 2009, Fast Company put him at No. 1 on their list of "100 Most Creative People in Business;[30] the Daily Telegraph named him the second "Most Influential Briton in Technology,[31] Forbes magazine listed him as second amongst the "Most Powerful People in Technology;[32] and The Guardian named him "Inventor of the Decade".[33]

In 2010, Bloomberg BusinessWeek listed Ive among the "World's Most Influential Designers",[34] CNN Money named him "Smartest Designer" in their "Smartest People in Tech" story.[35] Ive was listed at No. 18 on "The Vanity Fair 100" list,[36] and Eureka of The Times group placed him No. 5 on their list of "Britain's Most Important Scientists";[37] Fortune named Ive the "world's smartest designer" for his work on Apple products.[38]

In 2011, the Daily Mail profiled Ive, hailing him as a "design genius".[39] He also was nominated for a British Inspiration Award.

In 2012, Vanity Fair gave Ive along with Tim Cook the first spot on their annual "New Establishment" List.[40]

In 2013, Blue Peter awarded Ive a gold Blue Peter badge[41] and then was profiled by Bono in The 2013 TIME annual list of the 100 most influential people in the world.[42]

Ive was appointed Commander of the Order of the British Empire (CBE) in the 2006 New Year Honours for services to the design industry. In the 2012 New Year Honours, he was elevated to Knight Commander of the Order of the British Empire (KBE) for "services to design and enterprise";[43] he was knighted by Princess Anne in Buckingham Palace in a May 2012 ceremony.[44] He described the honour as "absolutely thrilling" and said he was "both humbled and sincerely grateful".[45][46]

As of 2011, Ive is listed as an inventor on 596 design and utility patents.[47][48]

Personal life[edit]

Ive married Heather Pegg in 1987; the couple have twin sons, and reside in San Francisco, California.[8]


See also[edit]


  1. ^ Interview introduction by Charlie Rose, Charlie Rose, 11/20/2013. Retrieved 2013-11-27.
  2. ^ ""Jonathan Ive" profile at Newsmakers vol 2, Detroit: Gale, 2009. Student Resources In Context.". 
  3. ^ "Apple Leadership: Jonathan Ive". Retrieved 17 November 2012. 
  4. ^ Lance Whitney (24 October 2011). "Jonathan Ive: Steve Jobs stole my ideas". Cnet. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved 7 November 2013. 
  5. ^ Jim Dalrymple (9 July 2010). "Steve Jobs, Jony Ive named smartest in tech". Cnet. CBS Interactive Inc. Retrieved 7 November 2013. 
  6. ^ Walter Isaacson. Steve Jobs Autobiography. 
  7. ^ "The art of keeping it simple". Retrieved 20 June 2012. 
  8. ^ a b c Waugh, Rob (20 March 2011). "How did a British polytechnic graduate become the design genius behind £200billion Apple?". Daily Mail (London). Retrieved 2 January 2012. 
  9. ^ "Jonathan Ive". Design Museum. Retrieved 2 January 2012. 
  10. ^ a b c d Seth Fiegerman (6 November 2013). "10 Things You Didn't Know About Apple Design Chief Jony Ive". Mashable. Mashable. Retrieved 7 November 2013. 
  11. ^ a b "Jonathan Ive". Retrieved 2 January 2012. 
  12. ^ Metz, Rachel (29 August 2011). "Meet Jonathan Ive, The Designer Behind Apple's Gorgeous Products". Huffington Post. Retrieved 2 January 2012. 
  13. ^ Ohannessian, Kevin (18 May 2009). "100 Most Creative People in Business: No. 1 – Jonathan Ive". Fast Company. Retrieved 2 January 2012. 
  14. ^ "Design evolution". Braun GmbH. 2009. Retrieved 24 May 2011. "Designer: Dieter Rams and Dietrich Lubs" 
  15. ^ "The Future of Apple Is in 1960s Braun: 1960s Braun Products Hold the Secrets to Apple's Future". (Gawker Media). 14 January 2008. Retrieved 30 June 2010. 
  16. ^ Richmond, Shane (31 December 2011). "Apple designer becomes Sir Jonathan Ive in New Year Honours". Daily Telegraph. Retrieved 15 June 2012. "According to Walter Isaacson's biography of Steve Jobs, the company's late chief executive gave Ive a unique position within the company. Jobs told Isaacson: "He's not just a designer. That's why he works directly for me. He has more operational power than anyone else at Apple except me. There's no one who can tell him what to do, or to butt out. That's the way I set it up."" 
  17. ^ Accessed 24 November 2013
  18. ^ "Apple Announces Changes to Increase Collaboration Across Hardware, Software & Services". Retrieved 1 November 2012. 
  19. ^ "1999 Young Innovators Under 35: Jonathan Ive, 32". Technology Review. 1999. Retrieved 14 August 2011. 
  20. ^ "iPod designer leads culture list". BBC News. 12 February 2004. Retrieved 12 January 2012. 
  21. ^ "Life After Steve?". MacUser. 24 March 2006. Retrieved 28 February 2011. 
  22. ^ Burrows, Peter; Satariano, Adam (25 August 2011). "Can Jobs' Deputies Extend Apple's Success?". Bloomberg. Retrieved 25 August 2011. 
  23. ^ "Jonathan Ive wins GQ's Product Designer of the Year". GQ. September 2007. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  24. ^ Trescott, Jacqueline (19 July 2007). "National Design Awards Presented at White House". Washington Post. Retrieved 7 May 2010. 
  25. ^ "The top ten most influential Britons in America". Daily Telegraph (London). 8 January 2008. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  26. ^ "Creativity-Online". Creativity-Online. 19 February 2008. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  27. ^ Foresman, Chris (2 July 2008). "Jonathan Ive takes home MDA award for iconic iPhone design". Retrieved 28 February 2011. 
  28. ^ "Jony Ive gets honorary doctor of fine arts degree from RISD". 9to5mac. 2009. Retrieved 8 August 2010. [dead link]
  29. ^ "List of Honorary Doctors of the Royal College of Art". 18 August 2007. Retrieved 28 February 2011. 
  30. ^ "100 Most Creative People in Business". Fast Company. 18 May 2009. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  31. ^ "The 50 most influential Britons in technology". Daily Telegraph (London). 24 September 2009. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  32. ^ Rose, Kevin (2009). "The 7 Most Powerful People in Technology". Forbes. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  33. ^ Garratt, Sheryl (28 November 2009). "Jonathan Ive: Inventor of the decade". London: UK Guardian. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  34. ^ "World's Most Influential Designers". Bloomberg BusinessWeek. 1 February 2010. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  35. ^ "The Smartest People in Tech". CNN Money. 2010. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  36. ^ "The Vanity Fair 100". Vanity Fair. October 2010. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  37. ^ Hough, Andrew (7 October 2010). "Britain's most important scientists". London: Eureka!. Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  38. ^ "The smartest people in tech – Smartest designer: Jonathan Ive". Fortune. 9 July 2010. Retrieved 10 July 2010. 
  39. ^ Waugh, Rob (20 March 2011). "How did a British polytechnic graduate become the design genius behind £200billion Apple?". Daily Mail (London). Retrieved 26 January 2012. 
  40. ^ "Vanity Fair's "New Establishment" List: Tim Cook and Jonathan Ive #1". Vanity Fair. 6 September 2012. Retrieved 6 September 2012. 
  41. ^ Sir Jonathan Ive honoured with exclusive gold Blue Peter Badge
  42. ^ Jonathan Ive|TIME 100: The 100 Most Influential People in the World|Profile at, 18 April 2013; retrieved 16 August 2013.
  43. ^ "Apple creative guru and Walton High School alumni knighted for services to design". Staffordshire Newsletter (Stafford). 30 May 2012. Retrieved 30 May 2012. 
  44. ^ "Apple design chief Jonathan Ive is knighted". BBC (London). 23 May 2012. Retrieved 23 May 2012. 
  45. ^ The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 60009. p. 24. 31 December 2011.
  46. ^ "Apple's Jonathan Ive gets knighthood in honours list". BBC News. 31 December 2011. 
  47. ^ "Jonathan Ive's list of design patents". Retrieved 28 February 2011. 
  48. ^ "Making Jony Ive a Knight sends UK Gov signal – 2012 is the year of tech". 

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