Google’s VP of Material Design talks about working on an iPad, reveals favorite mobile devices

by: John DyeDecember 21, 2015
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What will Matias Duarte introduce this year?

Matias Duarte, the former Director of Android User Experience and current Vice President of Material Design at Google, has been shaping and molding the aesthetics of our favorite operating system ever since Android 3.0 Honeycomb. Duarte’s guiding hand is evident in Google’s Material Design, which he describes as “a sufficiently advanced form of paper as to be indistinguishable from magic.

This Sunday, Beautiful Pixels hosted an interview with Google’s design champion to ask him some questions about his work life and the tools he uses most frequently. In the interview, Duarte speaks highly of Apple’s design and doesn’t hesitate to reveal that he regularly works with an iPad.

It’s kind of amazing actually, that I’m using a Surface Book and Google Docs, my Android phone has Apple Music, and that my iPad Pro has Microsoft OneNote – maybe there is hope for peace on Earth this holiday!

Maitas DuarteSee also: Listen to Matias Duarte talk design on Joshua Topolsky’s Tomorrow podcast5

Duarte comes across as someone who is genuinely thrilled that our technologies are converging on devices across brands saying “iOS users are very important to Google!” However, when asked what software he prefers to use, Duarte reveals that he’s got something of an old school streak in him:

Still the tools I use the most on a day to day basis to explore and articulate design ideas are whiteboards, notebooks, and Google Docs. Like I said, I’m excited about OneNote because I think it could become my personal digital portable whiteboard, but for nuanced sketching, I still haven’t found something I’m as comfortable and proficient with as paper and ink.

matias duarte The Verge

The Material Design VP’s preference for the tactile and physical shows not only in Material Design, but also in his preference of mobile devices. When asked, Duarte revealed that aesthetics and durability rank right up there with hardware specs for him.

For work I have a Nexus 6P, but I also have a Moto X with the teak wooden back that I love. It’s long in the tooth though, so I need to find something to replace it…I also absolutely love my Sony tablet, the Xperia Z3 Tablet Compact. It’s an amazing small tablet, super thin and light, and best of all, waterproof! On vacation, I’d see everyone else sitting in their deck chairs reading their tablets anxiously, and I’d just slip into the pool with mine and order a MaiTai. I know that seems super indulgent and niche, but actually I feel like that’s an important unsung part of the future — making technology robust enough that it’s not precious but just part of everyday life the way we want to live it.

For more info, be sure to check out the full interview at Beautiful PixelsWhat do you think of Matias Duarte’s hardware and software picks? Let us know your thoughts in the comments!

Next: 10 best new Android apps

  • Qbancelli

    Click bait.
    He never really said in this article that he works on an iPad.

    • N&LH

      lol…so what he is doing with his iPad ?

    • Jimmy Westenberg

      “I’m actually totally loving OneNote right now, on both on my Surface and my iPad.”

      “It’s kind of amazing actually, that I’m using a Surface Book and Google Docs, my Android phone has Apple Music, and that my iPad Pro has Microsoft OneNote – maybe there is hope for peace on Earth this holiday!”

    • tiger

      Denial i see. Or that you cannot read the damn article!

  • Ris

    Classic moron… He uses iPad??? So iPad is better than Android??? One of a Google VP using concurrency product to get job done for his own product. Disaster

    • Chris

      Or he’s a lover of technology.

    • tiger

      Would you prefer him to use Nexus 10? LOL

      Yes, as for tablet, iOS tabs are a lot better than anything Android has come out with!

      • Not to mention the fact that there are more apps that take advantage of the larger screens.

      • The Nexus 9 is a might fine device, but the OS and apps don’t help it.

    • A tech god

      Free your mind from such narrow black and white thoughts

    • T.J.

      You do know that Google makes iPad apps, right?

  • Chris

    Anyone know where I can get this wallpaper?

  • tiger

    Well, iPAD PRO is a powerhouse….

    • RockMarz

      Surface all night long

      • tiger

        Wanna bet which will sell better 6 mos from now?

        • RockMarz

          Lol.. It’s already beating iPad.

          • RockMarz

            Ok during the holiday stretch

          • tiger

            Beating? It just came out! LOL

            Wanna bet?

          • RockMarz

            It’s a few day lead atleast. But seriously I’ll take the new surface

          • Guest123

            I’ll take Surface as well. Way better device and more versatile.

          • tiger

            Hmmm, i believe iPad PRO alone just beat out the ENTIRE Surface line-up in SALES over the holidays!

          • tiger

            Hmmm, i believe iPad PRO alone just beat out the ENTIRE Surface line-up in SALES over the holidays!!

      • Diego

        Its a good laptop, but a crappy tablet.

    • coldspring22 .

      To a deluded isheep troll. So how do you run pro software suite like Adobe premier pro, Adobe photoshop and lightroom on your ipad “pro”? How does A9 processor beat core i7 from intel? how does measly 128GB storage beat terabyte+ storeage on suface pro 4? Only in isheep’s dream LAMAO!

      • Scr-U-gle

        To the androne troll.
        Try actually running Photoshop, Lightroom or Premier on a surface, they can’t handle it, then try Lightroom, photoshop or Premier, and some better alternatives on an iPhone 6 as I do.

        My iPhone out performs my dual-core, multi-threading 2.8ghz i7 when outputting the final render videos, edits faster, Photoshop and Lightroom are faster and smoother on my iPhone 6.

        Maybe if you actually tried these things on custom designed Apple CPUs you would have something to say.

        • lol

          good luck draging-n-dropping files on those iSupercomputers

          • Scr-U-gle

            Don’t need to kid, it all just happens.

            And you seem to have forgotten Google had to by the iOS app Bump!

          • Pilz

            I run Photoshop CC 2015 on my surface and light room. Both run perfectly so keep using your ipad and its ‘mobile’ watered down apps.

          • Scr-U-gle

            Without a dedicated graphics card, it runs like your androne phone, crap.
            Even my year old phone has better graphics card.

          • Pilz

            That’s not true, I had a Surface Book i7 with the dgpu and it crashed constantly. Im getting better performance out of my SP4 than I did my Surface Book (when it worked) so again keep on trolling. Firsthand experience with all 3 trumps your random nonsense that is just annoying rather than helpful. The Surface line is a full desktop based OS and not a mobile one that is crippled like iOS on the ipad pro. It wouldn’t matter of the ipad pro had. a octa core intle chip, it would still lose because its running a mobile OS. I use my SP4 docked at my desk to my 34in 21:9 2k monitor and it works flawlessly all while using Photoshop CC2015, and light room simultaneously. I’m not going to state somthing on here thats a lie or spread false information like you are because I have standards. I don’t see the point in continuing this further because the conversation isn’t leading anywhere except in a circle. You can continue to believe what you want, but at the end of the day I’m comfortable knowing that your comments are an opinion where everyone eleses about the SP4 are facts and can be backed up.

          • Scr-U-gle

            Very funny, full desktop without a gpu.

          • Pilz

            Your comment doesn’t make any sense since the Surface line is more inline with ultrabooks

          • Scr-U-gle

            Your the who makes the claim its a full desktop version, without gpu support its a crippled version.

            Still laughing at wannabes telling a professional how to run graphic software.

            What a silly troll you are.

          • Pilz

            Regardless its a full PC and will outperform any mobile system like the iPad pro

          • Scr-U-gle

            So you can edit full 4K streams live without issue, of course you can. When you wake up from your dream, let me know.

          • Pilz

            -I’ve owned an iPad so thank you for another ignorant assumption. No ‘professional’ (I’m using that term lightly) would use an iPad to edit 4K or any video in a professional manner for a variety of reasons. I can edit 4K on my SP 4 without any issues. I don’t have to dream when it’s reality.
            -The Surface Pro 3/4 are excellent; I don’t need to admit anything. The same could be said about the iPads which are all mediocre.
            -it has never been about the money which is another ignorant statement on your part

            You failed to address any of the links I posted supporting my previous statements,nor did you provide hard evidence as I asked for. Your comments are a sad attempt at trying to bully your way into winning something that can’t be disputed. I never liked Microsoft’s Surface line until their SP3, nor have I ever liked the iPad line. I’ve owned many devices over the years, but it seems that you apparently know more than I do with your assumptions.

            At this ppintt continuing this conversation is more entertaining than anything else. You’re so deluded that it would be easier to convince the pope to be atheist than for you to admit your fanboy nonsense is the only thing driving this.

          • Scr-U-gle

            Funny, now you’re an offline editor on a surface.

            You need to make up your mind what you are.

          • Pilz

            Offline editor? I have idea what you’re talking about but you still haven’t provided any tangible evidence to support your claims.

          • Scr-U-gle

            I suggest you scroll up, or does your Surface have an issue with that! You are the one who has made ridiculous claims that you edit 4K on a machine that can’t handle it, you are the who made claims with no back up.

            And this is for free, in the professional editing business, which I have worked in, there are two types of editors, on and offline, but why would a wannabe like you know that? With you knowing everything about professionals who use iPads I thought you would have known that?!?

            I suggest you look up the term professional and remember you are a child at school, the opposite of professional. Bloody kids!

          • Pilz

            I have edited video in 4K without any issues so that’s not a lie. I have no reason to come on here and lie but I guess its okay for you to troll non stop without backing up your claims? I have no further need to take a screen recording and further disprove you when you’ve failed to substantiate any claim ever. I don’t edit content for money, I do it for myself because its interesting to learns something new.

            A child? It’s nice to see you again making IG orant statemts void of any facts. You have no idea who I am, nor would it matter if you did. You’re a condescending narcist judging from your posts, but you might need to look up this ‘big words’ because you’re acting like a child.

          • Scr-U-gle

            I know who you are, a wannabe creative who is still at school, you pretend you edit 4K on a surface, rotfl, oh dear, I have to wipe away the tears of laughter, what a joker.

            Next you’ll be telling us all how you work at Pixar and render on a Surface, what’s dullard you truly are.

          • Pilz

            You could not be more wrong :) It’s funny how you’re still making assumptions all while acting like they’re facts. I don’t need to pretend like you do; it’s amusing to watch what sh*t you pull out of your a*s with each response.

          • Scr-U-gle

            Still nothing really in response except hyperbole, you play at IT and creative industries, some of actually work in it son, non of us use Windows, android or a surface, funny that you are the only one whose editing with any graphics cards.

            Funny boy.

          • Pilz

            It did work, but it had issues as I mentioned. The performance is still better than an iPad pro with or without the dgpu. A professional would never use a mobile OS based tablet to do ‘professional’ work. You can troll all day because the argument is already over. A mobile OS based device will never out perform a laptop, ultrabook, or desktop PC.

          • Scr-U-gle

            Of course they don’t, that’s why the most used tablet by professionals is the iPad.

            Next!

        • V-Phuc

          run all that Adobe apps on iPhone6? Really? You seem to forget that the primary purpose of these apps are for photo editing. And for photo editing, you FIRST need screen estate. For better view, finer details, all the drag-drop-retouch-layering, etc. Yeah, phone works but please do so on a bigger tablet or a real desktop. Cheezee! Like I can run many things on my phone, but does it mean that it replaces my laptop or desktop? If your phone out-performs your desktop as you claim, man, get a new desktop PRONTO!

          • Scr-U-gle

            What you don’t understand is the point being made, my year old phone outperforms the surface, the iPad pro outperforms my phone.

            Got it yet numb nuts?

    • lol

      yeah a giant phone is better than a full fledged computer LOL

  • John Doe

    Surprised he does not use the Samsung Note with its pencil drawing capability ..

    • Diego

      With touchwiss?
      Yeah, he’s drooling all over it.
      /s

    • tiger

      Dude, Apple Pencil is superior to everything that is out there now.

      • RockMarz

        Surface kicks the apple pencils ass

        • tiger

          That is your ignorance talking again….

          • RockMarz

            Really isn’t. I have the pro in front of me as well the surface. So I have an idea but thanks for👏 responding

          • tiger

            Me too! So, your Surface pen is better than Pencil? How so? Eraser?! LOL

          • Guest123

            So how is pencil better? Cos it can draw? LOL

          • Pilz

            No it’s not, the surface is far superior. The pen is perfect, I’ve used the ‘apple pencil’ and there isn’t even a comparison to be made. If MS has done one thing correctly its their Surface line and their pen. I had a Surface Book but it constantly crashed and after many many updates I returned it for a SP4. I use the own daily and ita insainly accurate and never has any lag at all. Apple is new to the game and needs to catch up to MS which will take them a whole if they ever do. The Surface is a full PC (I gave the i7 with 16gb of ram and dock). The iPad is still running a mobile OS so it will never be as capable nor will its stupid pencil. Writing with it isn’t great and its an extra ~$100 on top of the ipad pro.

          • coldspring22 .

            Talking about yourself again?

      • V-Phuc

        Dude, you’re late like …2 years. Ever heard of Note 10.1 2014 ed.? don’t care what OS it runs, it still beats the crap out of the new iPad pro! Too bad that Samsung is too stupid for not improving it further. Apple saved by the bell!

      • coldspring22 .

        Only an isheep troll infesting android forum would think that. why does the silly pencil needs charging at all? Why can’t it hover? Why does it plug into ipad In such retarded fashion for charging? Where is compartment for stroing pencil in Ipad? And finally, why is the stupid thing so expensive?

      • KineticAirbag

        He’s talking about a phone, not a tablet. No need to bring your Apple loving ways into every aspect.

  • Diego

    Whats the problem with him using an iPad?
    If he likes it, good for him.

    • V-Phuc

      Maybe he should go and work for Apple. I heard there is a coffee fetcher opening for Tim Cooks. LOL.

      • Basit Saeed

        Yours is the kind of fanboyism that make people laugh at us Android lovers.

        • V-Phuc

          Relax buddy. He doesn’t need you to defend himself! LOL. Besides, based on all the previous comments he has made, he came across to me as a bonehead. Now, bragging about the waterproofing of his tablet to order a MaiTai in the pool, really?!!! Perhaps he should fetch coffee for Sony CEO.

    • robert fish

      Exactly,each os has its good and flaws.Nothing wrong with device harmony.

  • Diego

    Can’t blame him, android has no tablet focused apps.

  • A tech god

    He definitely has made android more attractive and used colors that in the past would be shunned

  • Latheryin

    Now if he could only see how bad of an idea it really is.

  • abazigal

    It is Google’s job to ensure that their services run well on all platforms. I feel it is good that he is device agnostic. Or at least, not adverse to trying out a variety of devices so he is constantly up to date with what the competition has to offer and how their own offerings stack up.

    But seriously Google, when is split-screen coming to the iPad for your Google drive suite of apps?

    • V-Phuc

      Agree with your last point. They released their latest tablet, Pixel C, and still have not worked out a way to have split-screen feature to take advantage of the bigger screen estate. What a waste? Perhaps Google should borrow a few Samsung engineers. Not saying Samsung is doing all things correctly, but at least they have done well on the split-screen feature.

      • abazigal

        Well, even Apple didn’t get the feature right overnight, and there are still some noticeable flaws with the iPad’s current implementation.

        Google has promised that the feature will be out by next year, though I think their biggest challenge will be on how to push this update and get their partners to include this feature asap.

        • V-Phuc

          Split-screen, isn’t it more a hardware issue than software? If so, until Google does it, no other app developer will jump in. Anyway, it’s just funny to me that they try to promote Pixel C for productivity, but misses out on that one particular feature. One that I would say is almost the cornerstone for any device claiming to be “productive”. I can play games, watch videos all day long on many other (cheaper) tablets.

          • abazigal

            Spec-wise, the pixel c should have no problems running it. I think the main challenge is in details like how to activate it, management of memory and so on. There’s speculation that Android might support up to 4 apps side-by-side, so perhaps that makes the implementation even trickier.

            Given that android allows for multiple resolutions, I don’t think it may need the same amount of developer support currently required by ios, but we will have to see.

          • Chester

            With a build.prop edit in MM, I was able to run 4 separate apps windowed on a 2013 N7. I was running video streams on YouTube and Crunchyroll simultaneously without any stutter. This means any hardware since the Nexus 4 should be plenty capable, but entering and exiting windowed modes is very buggy. The status bar area bugs out too. Google still has a few things to figure out, so I’d agree with their decision to disable the feature for now.

  • Scr-U-gle

    “There was a time when Macs were a small part of the Google fleet, but as of now if you start at Google and want to use a platform other than Mac you have to make a business case,” says Clay Caviness.

  • Boonlumsion Piyapon

    there is google app on ios and Material Design apply to all google software. so … yeah they have ios device in work.

    same idea apple also have android in hq to made apple music for android.

  • doloresanto

    I think that Matias Duarte is a douchebag, both on the inside and outside.