Following up to the news that 3D Touch will be removed from the iPhone 11 Pro, here’s a link back to a great 2015 Bloomberg piece by Chris Nosenzo, “How Apple Built 3D Touch”, that includes quotes from Ive, Schiller, and Federighi. The piece came out the day 3D Touch debuted on the iPhone 6S. Here are a couple of bits that represent Apple’s design process at its best:
Ive is proud of 3D Touch because it improves the experience of owning an iPhone, but he’s also proud of what it says about Apple. He can’t think of another company that would have put so many resources into such a seemingly subtle, yet potentially profound, change. […]
Apple’s faith in design helped make it the first company to reach a market cap of more than $750 billion. It also means that every few years it has to bet its future on the instincts of a few people with strong opinions about how things should work. Ive would rather be sentenced to life with a flip phone than subject his designs to focus groups, so when the company makes a change like 3D Touch, its business plan, basically, is to trust that he and his team are right.
Ive also hints at the specter of data-based design decisions:
Schiller believes that 3D Touch is a breakthrough, but the designers aren’t so sheltered that they’re oblivious to his point. “I mean, it’s remarkable that within a corporation that has to deal with so many absolutes … so many metrics …” Ive says, trailing off. “You know, it’s so very hard to measure [what designers do]. We can be working on something for a long time and still not know quite how it’s going to work out.”