Heading into WWDC, Apple made no bones about what we’d be getting from them. Unlike I/O, which is full of delightful mystery in the months leading up to it, Apple is fairly straightforward about WWDC. Walking into the event, banners with “7” and “X” decked the Moscone center. Anyone who was there, or cared to keep tabs on Apple, knew what they were about to see.
You heard it, I heard it, and everyone said it. The world had memes ready to go before the event began, and were ready for any news of anything even remotely suspect. We took bets on how often we’d hear “revolutionary” or “magical”. Still, we were interested in what was coming out way from Apple. Would we get true innovation, or more of the same?
The interface is new for the sake of being new.
Neither, really. What we saw was so oddly different, we we’re still not sure what to make of it. We’re still cocking our heads like so many pugs, wondering if iOS 7 is even interesting. The wholly new look suggests that they were as bored of looking at the interface as everyone else was. New icons, a new color scheme, but still no innovative features to speak of.
The commentary isn’t that Apple copied. That much is clear. The real issue is how clean a forgery this new OS is. Only time, and use, will tell. So far, it looks like a really half-hearted effort to satiate unruly users. The interface is new for the sake of being new.
If we look further into the actual design, there is no direct lineage. We can’t rightly say they took from Android or Windows, wholly. We see some wisps of TouchWiz, and a few subtle Windows Phone touches. Android is peeking at us from iOS 7, too.
To get tucked into an argument about where these design cues came from is to open a can of worms. Software design is ripe with theft. If we’re being fair, we could make the point that just about everyone stole design cues from Apple in getting where they are now, Android included. Again, there is no point to tracing the history of design, because we’ll just get all the way back to cave drawings and unibrows.