Apple's Chief Designer Jony Ive Leaving the Company

Tim Cook said Jony Ive is a singular figure in the design world

Tim Cook said Jony Ive is a singular figure in the design world

The Apple designer responsible for the look of most of the company's most iconic products - including the iPhone - is leaving after 27 years.

Credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty ImagesThe company announced Ive's departure in a press release on Thursday (June 27), and it sounds amicable.

Ive will, however, continue working with Apple from the outside - his new venture, called LoveFrom, will count the iPhone maker as a client.

"While I will not be an [Apple] employee, I will still be very involved - I hope for many, many years to come", Sir Jonathan told the FT in an exclusive interview.

"This just seems like a natural and gentle time to make this change", he said. "Today it is stronger, more vibrant and more talented than at any point in Apple's history", Ive said in a statement.

The iMac took consumers by storm with its colorful side panels and unique user interface that helped differentiate Apple products from its peers.

Despite the major step outside Apple's umbrella, Ive told the Financial Times that LoveFrom won't be designing products that are different for the sake of being different but will focus on applying what he learned at Apple in a tangible way.

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In addition to the iPhone, Ive designed the iPod, Apple Watch, and the company's futuristic "Apple Park" campus, along with several Macs including the new Mac Pro debuting this year.

Ive has been at Apple for around 30 years and defined the look and feel of many of its most popular products, including the iPhone, iPad, and Macbooks.

Even though Apple has a great design team, it will be interesting to see if the company's design language changes with Ive's departure.

'After almost 30 years and countless projects, I am most proud of the lasting work we have done to create a design team, process and culture at Apple that is without peer, ' Ive said.

"Jony is a singular figure in the design world and his role in Apple's revival can not be overstated", chief executive Tim Cook said in a statement. CEO Tim Cook also commented to Financial Times in his usual upbeat voice, saying, "We get to continue with the same team that we've had for a long time and have the pleasure of continuing to work with Jony".

With Ive set to leave, designers Evans Hankey and Alan Dye will assume control of Apple's vaunted design group where they will report directly to Jeff Williams.

The departure of the world's most famous industrial designer and the custodian of the entire Apple aesthetic - from its hardware and software to its physical architecture - will come as a shock to its investors and customers.

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