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iOS 7 developers discuss Android/Windows similarities and redesign challenges

Karen Haslam | June 17, 2013
After the WWDC keynote on Monday night we fired off some emails to developers to gauge their reaction to the announcements.

BeLight's Viktoria Naumova told us that simplifying app icons to such an extent will limit designers. "Where it used to take a designer days to create a realistic, highly-detailed icon with pseudo textures, the new flat icons can be authored in no time at all. But that raises an issue: Icon quality is often the first step in assessing an app. If an icon is attractive and obviously designed by a pro, you're going to open the app and check it out. But what happens when the icons in the iTunes App Store begin to resemble each other a bit too much? Often the details set professional icons apart from amateurs."

Karen MacLean of Open Planet Software expects that developers will be redesigning their icons to adapt to Apple's new guidelines. "One aspect of iOS 7 we have noticed is that the rounding on corner of the App icons is very slightly more than it was before. Many icons, including a couple of our own, used the shape of the icon to their advantage - for example by placing the contents in a frame. It will be interesting to see how many icons are reworked for iOS 7," she said.

Will I need to redesign my app for iOS 7?

It's not just icons that will need some attention in iOS 7. A number of developers are now faced with decision of whether to redesign their apps. Something many expect will be a time consuming process. However, our developers are happy to take on the challenge.

Marketcircle CEO Alykhan Jetha expects that the redesign process will be challenging and time consuming for many developers. He explained: "Most apps have taken Apple's design language and derived from it. It took some time for developers to make that inspiration shine. It's going to be the same for this new design language."

"It's going to be a challenge, but you can bet that we'll working extra hard to figure out how we can best leverage this new work and bring the benefits to our customers," Jetha added.

Readdle CEO Igor Zhadanov told us: "I love how Apple named it "polarising" during the keynote. The interface changes are significant, if not fundamental, so all developers will have to redesign their products eventually. The challenge though will be during the transition phase. Some users will prefer "traditional", iOS6-like appearance in the applications, while others will be looking for the new design. "

"This will fragment the market for some time (6-12 months) and will create extra pressure for developers. Besides, some of the developers we met are concerned about possible limitations of the new design language, i.e. whether it will be possible to build applications that are both compliant to the new guidelines and distinguished enough to stand out among competitors," Zhadanov added.


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