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Apple ex-hardware designer, Jony Ive, now free to work with Apple’s rivals

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Last updated: July 13th, 2022 at 16:18 UTC+02:00

Apple and Jony Ive are parting ways for good. This development will allow Ive, Apple's ex-hardware designer, to work with companies that Apple deems as competitors.

Jony Ive joined Apple in 1992. He was the leading designer for countless Apple products and contributed to the company's massive success over the years.

However, Jony Ive left the company in 2019 due to friction with Apple's leadership and CEO Tim Cook. The designer's frustrations with Apple's change of direction after Mr. Steve Jobs passed away were detailed in a book by New York Times author Tripp Mickle, titled “After Steve: How Apple Became a Trillion-Dollar Company and Lost its Soul.”

Needless to say, Jony Ive didn't see eye to eye with Tim Cook and the CEO's focus on services rather than hardware. And, of course, Apple's new approach at that time allowed Samsung to become the smartphone market's primary hardware innovator.

Apple and Jony Ive are done for good

After his departure in 2019, Jony Ive founded the design firm LoveFrom. Ive signed a multi-year agreement with Apple that would allow the two parties to continue collaborating. At that time, the contract was valued above the $100 million mark.

In exchange, Jony Ive could run his design firm with some restrictions. The contract stipulated that Mr. Ive would not be allowed to accept work from Apple's competitors, like Samsung.

Now, according to The New York Times (via The Verge), that agreement is coming to an end, as Jony Ive and Apple have decided to part ways.

Up until now, LoveFrom worked with companies like Airbnb and Ferrari on projects unrelated to mobile devices and Apple's products. But now that the agreement signed in 2019 has ended, we might very well see Jony Ive's designs returning to the mobile world, although, this time, it won't be through Apple products.

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