In a new interview, Apple’s senior vice president of software engineering, Craig Federighi, and Apple’s vice president of human interface design, Alan Day, sat down to discuss the thinking behind the iPhone 14 Pro’s dynamic island and how it was developed.
during the interview with the Japanese magazine AxisFederighi, who oversees iOS development, said Dynamic Island represents the first major change to the iPhone’s user experience since the iPhone X five years ago.
This is probably the first major process change in five years since the iPhone X came out. Five years ago, we lost the Home button with the iPhone X. This mainly reviewed the different iPhone operating methods, such as how to unlock the screen lock, return to the home screen, And how to switch applications. This new feature has also changed the look of the iPhone, and made me think again about how many apps and notifications are running and how to manage persistent behavior in the background. It was a very exciting challenge for us to integrate what is happening on our iPhone into this little interactive space.
Dye, who introduced Dynamic Island during Apple’s “Far Out” event last month, said Dynamic Island is further blurring the line between where a device ends and software starts on the iPhone, calling it an example of “Apple-like development.”
For one purpose, our hardware and software partners will come together in the same studio to solve the problem together. This new feature also made it possible to view alerts, notifications, and running processes in real time without seeing the boundaries between hardware and software. I think it’s a good example of Apple-like development.
Speaking about where the idea for Dynamic Island came from, Dye said the team thought about what the extra space at the top of the screen could use, thanks to the smaller TrueDepth camera system.
At Apple, it is very difficult to trace the source of ideas. Because our work is based on huge discussion with different groups of people. However, one of those discussions was that if the sensor area on the screen could be reduced, what could be done with the excess space. It’s not an argument that has been made in the last year or so, but it is one of the topics that has been discussed for many years.
Dye said the status bar area is a small but very important part of the iPhone experience. “It’s an area where our hard work in every pixel has a very big impact,” Day said. “So there was a story about doing something a little more special in this area anyway. Something very elegant, but very useful.”
In order for this experience to feel smooth and natural, we have honed meticulous care and skills from both sides of the design and engineering. Our goal was to make them forget that there are static physical devices and make them think that the whole thing is a fluid-like dynamic program.
Federighi noted that during the iPhone 14 Pro event at the Steve Jobs Theater in Apple Park, there was an audible sense of surprise when Dynamic Island was first revealed, saying he had the same reaction when he first saw it indoors. “Personally, I felt as if there was a new, life-saving identity on my iPhone,” Federighi said. “It’s a very subtle animation effect, but it’s a little different from anthropomorphism, but I think it gave the iPhone a strong new character and liveliness.”
Since its introduction, Dynamic Island has received positive feedback from users and online customers, with some calling it one of Apple’s best designs in years. Already, some Android makers are looking to replicate the Dynamic Island experience on other smartphones.
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