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C’mon Apple: be the new new Celine

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So, Jony Ive, former chief designer and consultant at Apple, the man most responsible for the visual charm of Apple products, the man who helped turn computers and phones into objects of desire, made them more than just a vector of functionality, but more of an identity card. — and his former employer reportedly agreed to cut their last ties.

What does this mean for the “mixed reality” headset, that over-the-eye gateway to the metaverse that Apple is rumored to release in the second quarter of next year? In other words, what does this mean for those of us whose willingness to interact with an alternate reality can be changed with such a device?

After all, if a company could ever solve the problem of developing a piece of equipment that would make you want to wear a device on your face that would allow you to enter another world while your body existed in this one, it would be the Apple.

If ever a company can overcome the precedent of Google Glass and even Oculus and create a wearable that doesn’t feel like a computer, it will be the company that has done it with laptops, music, headphones and, above all, the smartphone. . If ever a brand could solve the problem of fashion entering the metaverse – after all, that’s a different issue than fashioning the metaverse, but just as important in making the metaverse meaningful (and accessible) – it’ll most likely be Apple.

Except maybe no more.

Without Mr Quince, is Apple’s time as a bridge between hardwear and softwear finally really coming to an end? Are we at a crossroads between the old Apple and the new – between Apple as it was and another Apple as it could be – like Celine Phoebe versus Celine Edie?

Either way, it heralds another kind of paradigm shift.

For most tech companies, the departure of a designer wouldn’t be a cause for concern, but part of Apple’s brilliance was how the company borrowed a way to stimulate consumption from the fashion world.

It was Steve Jobs who understood that fashion strategies could be co-opted and applied to previously dull and boring consumer electronics to make them tactilely and visually enticing—thinner, sleeker, sleeker—and help a company transcend its industry. It was Mr. Jobs who realized the value of a new model for every season; who understood how planned obsolescence, an essential premise of fashion, can be applied to functioning; and how a value system can be built into the aerodynamic lines of a device so that it becomes something more than the mechanical sum of its parts.

And it was Mr. Jobs who partnered with a young designer named Jony Ive, a London-based Brit who joined the company in 1992 and defined Apple’s look for decades, inspiring fashion week brands to create accessories (iPad cases, cases for iPhone) for suggestions.

Not least, after the death of Mr. Jobs in 2011, Mr. Ive stepped out of the shadows with CEO Tim Cook to become the face of the company. If Mr. Cook was a humble technocrat, Mr. Ive was a visionary: a friend of Mark Newson (a Lockheed salon designer) and designer Azzedine Alaia, a proponent of the fusion of technology and fashion that occurred during the debut of the Apple Watch in 2014.

First came the hype—Paul Deneuve, a former YSL executive, became VP of Special Projects in 2013; Patrick Pruneau, formerly of Tag Heuer, as Senior Special Projects Director the following year; and also in 2014, Angela Ahrendts, a former Burberry chief executive, became senior vice president of retail and later implementation.

There was a presentation shortly before New York Fashion Week; a dinner party in Paris at Mr Alaya’s and a show at the Colette concept store; starring on the cover of China Vogue; and finally, Mr Quince’s appearance as Met Gala host with Anna Wintour in 2016.

However, in the end (and despite the collaboration with Hermès), the watch became less of a fashion destroyer and more of a health and wellness gadget. Mr. Deneuve left in 2016; Ms. Ahrendts and Mr. Pruno in 2019, the same year Mr. Ive became a consultant.

Since then, Apple has not had a chief design officer, and there has been no designer voice among Apple’s upper echelon of executives; there is no single, dominant visual point of view. Instead, Mr. Ive’s mandate was split between Evans Hankey, VP of Industrial Design, and Alan Dye, VP of User Interface Design.

However, Ms. Hankey and Mr. Dai had worked with Mr. Ive for years on products such as the MacBook Air and watches, and it seemed that, at least nominally, Mr. flame and aesthetics. .

Until now. That’s why the future headset and how it will look is so important. Perhaps, given the potential time, this will be the last product to feature Mr Quince’s fingerprints on the design. But perhaps it could be a sign of something more.

Apple and Mr. Ive declined to comment on their relationship for this article. But if Apple proves that this could be the beginning of a new era, rather than the beginning of the end of its commitment to style as a signifier – not the beginning of watered-down versions of what came before, with almost clichéd rounded edges and a sleek silver body – that would be the first real test. This is an opportunity to change the design of not only the product, but also to explore what we think about the product and Apple itself. And while Mr. Ive has reportedly fiddled with the headset over the last few years of his contract, it might have been preferable not so much to repeat as to redefine.

Indeed, the fact that watches have not changed the rules of the game and become a driving force in the industry means that Ms. Hankey (or anyone else, who knows?) has the opportunity to assert herself by creating something new, like this is what designers do when they take over a brand.

Think of it this way: Gucci and Celine or MaxMara? Turn everything we think we know upside down and redo it for a new reality, or just repeat the movements reliably, albeit boringly, over and over again? All signs point to the MaxMara model, but if there’s one thing fashion teaches us, it’s that brands can survive a designer switch if the company truly cares and empowers that designer.

Once upon a time, Apple learned some valuable lessons from fashion. Let’s see if he can do it again.

#Cmon #Apple #Celine

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