Apple iPhone Essay

This essay looks at the developing phone market and where the future lies for the Apple iPhone. Apple has seen 13 years of financial growth, but as of April 2016, they announced their first revenue decline since 2003 (Thielman, Neate and Hern, 2016). This could suggest that the phone has reached maximum capability and upgrades are no longer required. The following looks at area where apple could develop it’s phone to enable continued capital growth.

Google has invested in R&D of a modular phone, which are now commercially viable in an increasingly environmentally conscious world. The LG G5, the first commercially available modular phone has just been released. This is paving the way for a new type of phone, a more customisable phone. Apple have always been known for not giving users the ability to customise their phones, their computers and phones are sealed to stop users from upgrading parts inside. This is proven by the fact they have a recycle system with a machine that takes apart the phone and deconstructs it part by part so that Apple can use the parts again in new phones, or sell them to external companies to be used in other products. Since Apple offers it’s customers payment plans for the iPhone itself without the data, so they can pay a monthly fee and upgrade to the next one comes out, this makes perfect sense.

iOT (Internet of Things) is an idea that everything should be connected to the web for the user to be able to control more easily. HomeKit is a prime example of where Apple could build more function within its’ iPhone. “HomeKit is a framework for communicating with and controlling connected accessories in a user’s home.”. This framework Apple has produced is the beginning of something huge, the IoT (Internet of Things) are a collection of devices that are designed and developed to connect with each other on a network. McKinsey & Company estimate that the industry will be worth between $200-$300 Billion by 2025 (McKinsey & Company, 2015). This technology paves the way for a truly connected home that is able to combine all of the data about the person who lives there to be able to create a much better and easier life for the homeowner. When all the devices in the home talk to each other they are able to create schedules for temperature, lighting, cooking, locks and so much much more in relation to any of the residents schedules. This can mean opening the curtains, switching on the radio, preparing a coffee and ensuring a warm temperature all before you’ve even woken up.

Siri, the personal assistant accessed by voice with “Hey Siri”, is already a very useful tool and can accomplish many tasks like setting an alarm, reminding you to do something when you leave home or make a call for you. While Siri is already very useful, imagine the potential when the iPhone has built in everything I have discussed in this essay. Statements like “Hey Siri, I’m going on holiday, give me directions to Leeds airport, Shut down the house and send Mike access my garage for next Tuesday”.

The current iPhone has the ability to track Parkinson’s disease progress, help diagnose autism and predict seizures when paired with an Apple watch. When the iPhone is able to track the data of it’s user, that data can also be shown to a doctor for feedback. Imagine a world where the phone extends life and even prevents death.

An important addition to this is that the phone is not only a powerful tool, but it has become a symbol of status. The phone now comes in three different sizes and four different colours with a range of accessories that come with it, ranging from wireless headphones, cases and a bluetooth watch branded as the Apple watch with prices reaching as high as £13,500 for the most expensive model. Apple markets its products within music videos, films and tv and in2014 it was the worlds biggest spender on product placement. (Yoshida, 2015)

The original telephone (from the Ancient Greek τῆλε (têle, “afar”) + φωνή (phōnḗ, “voice, sound”) was a means of voice communication over distance. Telephones were static, and in the early days public phone boxes requiring the insertion of coins were the commonplace means of speaking with someone at a distance, often connected by means of a switchboard operator.

The advent of cell phones or mobiles radically changed the face of communication. The other great communication imperative was the Internet. The combination of features of both into the iPhone (Steve Jobs, co-founder and CEO of Apple, stated at the debut of the iMac that the name derived from the excitement of the Internet combined with the simplicity of Macintosh, and the use of the lower case i has subsequently been taken to imply the Internet connection on other devices) has created a powerful instrument which is much more than a simple “voice to voice” machine.

The telephone has developed from a static handset in a public phone booth (some remain, particularly near known suicide sites) to the brick-sized clumsy mobile and subsequently to elegant slim machines which are themselves status symbols. Perhaps the shape will see further development: already wrist phones may be seen; with the exponential increase in micro-surgery procedures it is not impossible to imagine mobile phone circuitry to be inserted under the skin at birth and apps and further modifications added as the owner learns control. Touch sensitivity is a growing issue nowadays: what about mental control of one’s internal phone? Use of the mind alone to operate computer systems is becoming an increasingly viable possibility (Falcon et al., 2016) and a brain-computer interface is already established. Last year, the Brown researchers reported testing a prototype of a fully implanted interface, with the electronics housed inside a titanium can that can be sealed under the scalp, though the device is not yet commercialised (MIT Technology Review, 2016).  At the moment, “display” is becoming increasingly sophisticated. Consider if the display were directly to the retina, the voice transmitted directly to the inner ear.

References;

Falcon, A., Irina, A., Pataki, D., Duvall, A., Jamaluddin, A., Jamaluddin, A., Duvall, A., Jamaluddin, A., Jamaluddin, A., Khaliq, A. and Jamaluddin, A. (2016). 8 Mind-blowing Gadgets You Can Control Just With Your Brain. [online] Hongkiat.com. Available at: http://www.hongkiat.com/blog/brain-controlled-gadgets/ [Accessed 16 May 2016].

McKinsey & Company. (2015). Unlocking the potential of the Internet of Things. [online] Available at: http://www.mckinsey.com/business-functions/business-technology/our-insights/the-internet-of-things-the-value-of-digitizing-the-physical-world [Accessed 16 May 2016].

MIT Technology Review. (2016). A Brain-Computer Interface That Works Wirelessly. [online] Available at: https://www.technologyreview.com/s/534206/a-brain-computer-interface-that-works-wirelessly/ [Accessed 16 May 2016].

Thielman, S., Neate, R. and Hern, A. (2016). Decline in iPhone sales leads to first revenue decline in 13 years for Apple. [online] the Guardian. Available at: https://www.theguardian.com/technology/2016/apr/26/apple-iphone-first-revenue-decline-13-years [Accessed 16 May 2016].

Yoshida, E. (2015). Apple had the most product placement in the films of 2014. [online] The Verge. Available at: http://www.theverge.com/2015/3/4/8147063/apple-transformers-age-of-extinction-product-placement [Accessed 16 May 2016].

Storytelling with Pixotale

Pixotale is a great app for iPad and iPhone that allows the user to create immersive storytelling experiences on the web, it works really well and it is a great example of how the web can use images to create great stories. You can check it out here, but also follow the link to view it yourself.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

http://pixotale.com/story/11937047/Screen Shot 2016-02-26 at 12.31.53Screen Shot 2016-02-26 at 12.32.05

Screen Shot 2016-02-26 at 12.32.21Screen Shot 2016-02-26 at 12.32.31Screen Shot 2016-02-26 at 12.32.36Screen Shot 2016-02-26 at 12.32.42Screen Shot 2016-02-26 at 12.32.48

Edge to Edge Display

Since 2007, Apple has changed the size of the screen on the iPhone. The first two iPhones had a 3.5-inch screen with a 320×480 pixel resolution.

iphone_3gs

The iPhone 4 changed the resolution boasting a new ‘Retina Display’ at a 960×640 resolution;

topic_iphone_4

The iPhone 5 changed the screen once again to better suit widescreen content. The screen was now 0.5″ bigger at 4″ with a resolution boost up to 1136×640.

apple-iphone-5-white

The iPhone saw the biggest change to screen size with the introduction of two entirely new screen size models. The iPhone with 4.7″ screen size and resolution of 1334×750 and the iPhone Plus with as 5.5″ screen size and a resolution of 1920×1080.

maxresdefault2

So with Apple being so happy to change the screensize and resolution of their iPhone, it is quite possible that they will opt for edge to edge display completely removing the bezels and making a much sharper looking phone. Like portrayed in this mockup;

iphone-7-rumors-4k-bevel-less-display-no-buttons-top-bottom-edge-edge-screen

Or could they follow in the footsteps of the Samsungs Galaxy S6 Edge which sees the screen wrap around the edges to give more immersive experience;

samsung-galaxy-s7-edge-vs-galaxy-s6-edge

References;

http://www.macworld.co.uk/news/iphone/iphone-7-release-launch-date-new-features-images-rumours-headphone-leaked-photo-airpods-feb-3-3530504/

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPhone_(1st_generation)

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IPhone_6

http://www.idigitaltimes.com/iphone-7-rumors-bevel-less-screen-no-buttons-top-bottom-edge-edge-display-485889

 

Future of 3D Touch

3D Touch is a technology that apple has implemented into it’s currently generation of iPhone to add a new dimension to the user interface. It now means there are three levels of force that can be applied to the screen that will offer the user a different experience, these are a tap, gentle press and hard press. A great video explaining it is below.

There is also technology researched by Disney to complement the 3D touch that would give tactile feedback to the user based on what was on the screen. This means the device could imitate the feel of an object and bumps and can also add resistance to the screen.

Haptic Feedback is something Apple have alreadly implemented into the iPhone to allow the user to understand when they have pressed harder for the 3D touches. This is just the beggining, using 3D touch more thoroughly throughout the operating system and creating different ways of doing things using these techniques will change the way people interact with their phones forever.

References;

http://www.cultofmac.com/320144/apple-patents-hints-at-the-amazing-future-of-force-touch/

http://www.laptopmag.com/articles/apple-patent-iphone-touch-id

http://www.wired.com/2015/09/what-is-the-difference-between-apple-iphone-3d-touch-and-force-touch/

Wireless Charging

One of the biggest problems Apple has as it strives to make an ever slimmer iPhone is the size of battery. This is one that even Apple itself has recognised by releasing what has been dubbed the ugliest product apple has ever made, the iPhone charging case.

smart-battery-case-gray

In the USA, 64% of the population have a smartphone and since iPhones are used by 42% of all smartphone users, it would be in the interest of smartphone makers to make an industry standard for wireless charging. So that any smartphone with wireless charging could be placed on any charger and it would work.

This would open the market to all sort of commercial possibilities, anywhere where you are able to sit for a long period of time could have a table with wireless charging available. This would change coffee shops, cafes, cinemas, driving, airports and public transport experiences forever. It would mean that the user could drive more sales in these places, because it is possible that the user may notice their phone low on battery so they decide to go and get a coffee while they give their phone some extra juice.

This also would relieve pressure from the phone makers, who could then continue to strive for the best design and better technology within their phone without having to put so much thought into battery drainage.

This is something that has already started to take effect, Starbucks announcing in June 2014 that between then and June 2017 it would roll out 100,000 wireless charging pads in it’s stores. But instead imagine the entire coffee table that was a charger and could charge multiple phones placed upon it. That would be, in my opinion, a gamechanger.

A wider rollout would see computer desks in offices keeping its users phone fully topped up while they work.

References:

http://appleinsider.com/articles/14/01/16/apples-iphone-now-represents-42-of-smartphones-owned-in-the-us—npd

http://www.pewinternet.org/2015/04/01/us-smartphone-use-in-2015/

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2656164/Out-phone-battery-Head-nearest-Starbucks-Coffee-chain-begins-rolling-free-wireless-charging-tables-stores.html

http://www.cultofmac.com/391531/how-apple-could-revolutionize-wireless-charging-for-iphone/

https://www.qualcomm.com/news/spark/2013/04/19/wireless-charging-glimpse-future

Future of displays

LG have created a working prototype of a OLED display that can be rolled up ‘like a piece of paper’, this is huge for future products that will be able to have bendable displays. The device made it’s first ever appearance at CES 2016. This is a great piece of technology that could definitely have its purposes. You can see a it below in this image;

2FCB46B700000578-3384028-image-a-3_1451924348175.jpg

Electronic paper is an interactive technology that looks similar to paper, something that can be touched like a normal touchscreen, the benifits of this is that it can be as thin as paper and have an interactive screen, the downside is the fact it only displays in 16 shades of grey and white. This is not something that can be used in phones that challenge colour screens but is definitely an interesting space to watch. There is one example of a phone that uses this technology to add an additional screen to it’s back. It’s a great looking phone that you can see here;YotaPhone_Photo_4.jpg

 

References;

http://www.lgdisplay.com/eng/prcenter/newsView?articleMgtNo=4962

http://www.theverge.com/2016/1/3/10706180/lg-rollable-display-flexible-screen-announced-ces-2016

Mobile Testing

An important side of the marketability of this website is the amount of users that can access it. This means, that the website must be accessible by multiple devices. Therefore I have tested three of the screens on the website to check if they would work, below are the results.

It is worth noticing that the site looks good and works well on most of the screens but it is important to also note that some of the design stops working on the smaller screens and that the devices are unable to show the site as they have been designed. The best way to get round this is to build a separate design for landscape mobile. Another issue is the fonts, and whether they display correctly, as you can see there is a mixed result from across the different devices. The mobile optimization has worked to a satisfactory level, but has suffered a few issues on smaller screens.

Marketing Items & Content Ideas

Scan 6 3
First item I will include takes design cues from my letterhead research, in general I want to keep in line with my luxurious branding feel so I will create this to hold everything I put inside it. Inside this envelope, I will have a total of three different item. Number one will be similar to the Natwest item for promoting their mobile banking app, It will be shaped like an iPhone, the screen will feature an internet browser with search of a web designer and then the link to akbdesign at the top. On the second page it will be captioned “What I do” and then list with icons the specific things I actually do. These will be:

SEO

Logo Design

Web Design

Marketing

Video Production

Social Media

3rd page – Quote

“AS A WEB DESIGNER, I KNOW THE FUTURE OF BUSINESS IS IN THE INTERNET. I DREAM BIG, AND MOTIVATED DREAMERS MAKE THINGS HAPPEN. I CAN MAKE THINGS HAPPEN FOR YOUR BUSINESS.”

4th page – Contact me

Twitter handle

blog address

The second item I will create is aiming to close the sale, in effect convince the viewer to give their hard earned cash to me in exchange for my services, for this I will use a double sided A6 sized piece of paper. One one side it will be captioned “Am I right for you?” and then have sales lingo such as, “You need a quality service provided by multi-skilled designer who can capture your business visually and use current trends to present it to your clients in the best possible light. You want him to do all this whilst being affordable, friendly and professional with an edge to his the rest of his competitors”. On the second side I will have client comments and ratings of the service I have  provided them in the past.

The final piece with be credit card style item which has a discount for them off the services provided they use it within as certain amount of time, this will make them think they have got a quality service, with a discount and then potentially be pressured into taking the service before they  would have done otherwise.

Natwest – Self Promotional Piece

I came across this promotional piece for Natwests mobile banking app, it simulates a mobile phone with the actual leaflet within the screen, then when you open the leaflet it has the relevant content. Something worth noting here is that they have used no more than three colours throughout the piece of marketing. As a web designer I could use this idea to promote what I do, this is something I will consider for part of my promotional piece.

Scan 6Scan 8 Scan 7

Apple Design Influences

How has Apple effected web design over the years, and will continue to do so.

History

Apple has always been big on white space, using it to bring attention to the images and the text, while this  is relatively simple design, it can be seen across many websites with similar design to apple’s website. It uses subtle gradients to add depth to otherwise boring content, great text and content that match, icons used across the site, a grid system to keep everything in line, user friendly navigation and use of javascript to avoid long loading times. This can be seen in Apples website along with a lot of other websites that have been influenced by their design structure.

Apples website:

apple

in comparison to

Mac Rabbit:

macrabbit

Versions:

versions

Pixelmator:

pixelmator

Removing Skeuomorphism

Skeuomorphism is the term given the visual style that represents physical objects. The reason for using the visual style to begin with, was that when people first started using computers, they didn’t fully understand how to use them, so designers made icons to represent the original object. This is why mail icon is a envelope, music icon contains a musical note ect. Now that computers have gone ‘mainstream’ and we all understand them much better, we can remove a lot of this unneeded clutter such as textures, reflections and shadows that allowed things to represent their physical counterparts. This was changing content to so that instead of using texture and realistic imagery to represent certain design aspects, they moved to flatter mimalist design. Here are a few examples from when apple removed skeuomorphism from their mobile operation system;

iOS-7-vs-iOS-6-comparison iOS6vsiOS7_icons

The Icons were all changed to be much simpler, vibrant and nicer to look at, with the removal of physical objects and textures. The same can be said for the design with the apps.

ipod

Examples of flat web design

http://foodpornindex.com Is a website that tracks the hashtags of certain foods, healthy and unhealthy. It then shows it in an info graph designed with flat colours.

foodpornindex

http://www.franzsans.de Is also shows another good use of flat design to show off the design of the font so you buy it, It works particularly well and I was tempted to buy the font.

Franz Sans

Future

I believe that circle user interfaces will be inspired by Apple’s new watch. Circles appear in our natural world, just look at the moon, wheels and fruit. They create emphasis and focus our attention, giving us a defined centre. Apple have recently re-imagined user experience for the smaller screen of the watch but could have potentially created another web trend. Heres a picture of the new operating system.

apple-watch-features-apps

Using circles in web design isn’t really a trend that has taken off over the years but there are still a couple of websites that use them in their design. Not just using circles in the design but in the user interface will create a completely different experience, something that hasn’t been created on rectangular shaped screens. While it doesn’t take up every area of the space, it will allow for a new type of white space by naturally giving the page more room to breath.

The operating system runs on a fluid icon system where you flick the screen to navigate into areas that aren’t currently visible, a crown on the side allows the user zoom in/out to their preference. If you click on an icon, an animation zoom into the icon until it is fullscreen then transforms into the app. This could be the next step in web design, as previously spoken about in my blog, pageless designs are becoming much more popular and seem to be more logical and less crowded than current designs. Interactivity to create a more immersive experience for the user would work well with pageless designs, I have researched websites that currently use circles in their user interface to create an interactive, pageless design.

A particularly interesting website I came across was (http://www.circle-ent.com) complete with animations and flat colours this website screams simplicity. Circle is a “idea lab”, a company that works on web experiences for ‘fun and brands’, it targets its market perfectly by showing off their digital skill with a fun, friendly user interface. This website seems to have already mastered Apple’s technique of simplicity through white space, the use of flat colours.

circle

Another great example of a user experience that uses circles was (http://vlog.it) which uses a lot of slick animation from arriving to the site, to the introduction of the wheel of vlogs. It was “named as finalist for the 15th SXSW Interactive Awards in the Motion Graphics category” and “won the Awwwards Site of the Day”. Not quite as simple as the previous, it still uses flat colours and white space. Shadows from one circle to the next give the wheel a sense of depth, which makes the century circle stand out even more. It is perfect for its audience, people who want to watch video blogs the site which on a single visit contains about 40 links to videos which all open within the same window with an animation, will show recycle a total of 396 videos. It means users don’t have to leave the page, they click on all videos until they have watched them all then just refresh for another set. It takes for a great user experience, takes on great design concepts.

vlog

A website that doesn’t use circles as its user interface, but just adds to the simplicity of the pageless design is this one created for the iPhone game “Hundreds” (http://playhundreds.com). It uses white space really well to give focus to the content of the page, and again uses flat colours. There are clutters of different sized circles together and animations create an experience that attracts the user to pay more attention. As you scroll down the page, you follow a grey circle which is shown above and below other images which creates depth within the page.

hundreds

References:

http://www.dtelepathy.com/blog/design/8-reasons-why-pageless-design-is-the-future-of-the-web

http://versionsapp.com

http://webdesign.tutsplus.com/articles/how-apple-has-influenced-web-design-over-the-years–webdesign-2553

http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-otl-aicher-ios-7-2013-7?op=1

http://webdesign.tutsplus.com/articles/flat-design-ios-7-skeuomorphism-and-all-that–webdesign-14335

http://www.apple.com

http://versionsapp.com

http://www.pixelmator.com

http://macrabbit.com

http://mashable.com/2013/06/12/ios-7-apps-comparison/

http://wpmedia.business.financialpost.com/2014/09/apple-watch-features-apps.jpg?w=620

http://www.digitalartsonline.co.uk/news/mobile-creativity/see-how-app-designs-have-changed-in-move-from-ios-6-ios-7/

http://gizmodo.com/skeuomorphism-will-never-go-away-and-thats-a-good-thin-1642089313

http://designshack.net/articles/graphics/designing-with-circles-tips-and-advice/

http://i-remember.fr/en

http://www.theprz.com/

http://www.businessinsider.com/apple-otl-aicher-ios-7-2013-7?op=1

http://www.awwwards.com/best-websites/franz-sans-powerful-pleasant-1

http://www.theprz.com/

http://activetheory.net/#!/work/food-porn-index

http://www.franzsans.de/

http://foodpornindex.com/#!/berry

http://wp.iosfans.com/wp-content/uploads/2012/11/Apple-Logo-Banner.jpeg