Thursday, February 4, 2010

Design shaping communications and media

Will Apple's irresistible design give it a chance at controlling —through the Ipad— the book, newspaper, magazine, radio, TV, and movie industries?

Behind the scenes with Terry Richardson and model Angela Lindvall as they shoot the Spring 2009 ad campaign for Jimmy Choo in NYC.
Courtesy of Vogue TV.

I realized not long ago that designers have this marvelous power to make products irresistible. Many of us fans suffer long lines to buy a product at its launching. Don't we all have our own favorite stuff?

Design is an innate ability, I guess it can be honed, but not too many of us are going to be the Andy Warhols of design...

And, it's incredibly powerful.

Tamara Mellon exemplifies this ability. While working as accessories editor for Vogue at their London office, she would sketch and order shoes from a Malaysian artisan to dress Vogue's model shootings. After a couple of years, the requests for these shoes grew to such an extent, that she started with Jimmy Choo a company to supply the demand. In 2001, Tamara bought Jimmy's 50% stake in the company. Since then, she has been manufacturing and opening stores to sell her beautiful shoes all over the world, with $2,000 plus sticker prices.

Jonathan Ive, is an English designer and the Senior Vice President of Industrial Design at Apple. He's been the gifted hand behind the eye catching Imac up until the recent Ipad.

Apple's Iphone is one of those products that has millions of followers, who wouldn't bat an eyelash to move away from ATT, if Apple made a better deal and decided to offer the Iphone through another carrier. In other words, the minutes don't count, nor the cheaper plans, nor the reliability of the carriers' networks. It's the —beauty of a gadget— that could allow Apple to take control of the carrier industry. Isn't it amazing?

Sports Illustrated on an Apple Ipad.

And, it's this same beauty attribute that could allow Apple to have a chance at controlling —through the Ipad— the book, newspaper, magazine, radio, TV, and movie industries... through subscriptions, with an Itunes morphed offering.

It hasn't been all peaches and cream for Apple, though. The WSJ reports that the latest 2009 fourth quarter shows that the Iphone has lost market share, as Motorola introduced its first devices on Google's Android platform.

My bets are on beauty over the beast, or beauty before aggregation.

What do you think... 2:1, even, 1:2?

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