I was sitting in a conference room yesterday where there were several different makes of laptops out on the table. Seeing a bunch of computers this way really hit home how beautiful Apple’s laptops really are. And its not just the clean silver case – several of the PCs had a similarly styled exterior. For me, its the rounded corners. Simple. Elegant. Clearly Apple cares about every aspect of their laptop design.
There are a few great vignettes in Walter Isaacson’s book on Steve Jobs that talk about Jobs obsession with rounded rectangles. From the original Macintosh application windows to Apple laptops to the iPod, iPhone and iPad designs. And while its harder to produce products with these rounded corners, the cost of not doing so is much greater.
I think we’re all starting to realize what Jobs realized a long time ago. Design matters.It matters a lot, in fact. Great design is not just a part of Apple’s success, I think it has a lot to do with the success of companies like Pinterest or Instagram as well. Its no longer acceptable (unless you’re Google, apparently) to have crappy looking product. More and more of the companies we work with are waking up to this and spending more time and focus making the look and feel of their applications as great as their functionality. Because in the application world, many people (and businesses) do judge a book by its cover.