Internal deadlines are being set later than past releases
Tim Cook’s executive shakeup from September 2012 is taking its toll on the development of iOS 7. Apple hopes to polish and finalize the software by September, people with knowledge of the matter said.Bloomberg reports that Apple’s strive to clean up iOS of skeuomorphism, along with the regrouping of its management over the past few months, has left engineers “racing to finish iOS 7 […] in time for a June preview at Apple’s annual Worldwide Developers Conference.”
Does Bloomberg mean to suggest there’s an offset chance Apple won’t have anything to show us at WWDC? Probably not, but that's what we're left to understand.
The same report notes that “the company still expects to release iOS 7 on time as soon as September,” adding that “internal deadlines for submitting features for testing are being set later than past releases,” citing people close to Apple.
Indeed, if history is any indication, Apple would have normally released a beta of iOS 7 by now. But something that happened for only two years in a row can hardly be called a trend.
Yet one person briefed on Apple’s plans said that “New features typically submitted for testing around February ran a month or more behind schedule,” according to the publication.
It also corroborates a rumor from a few weeks ago according to which Apple has moved developers from the Mac team over to the iOS team to finish the new mobile operating system in time.
Jonathan Ive, Apple’s industrial designer and chief of Human Interfaces, is known to be directly responsible for how these teams work to reach their deadlines.
Regarding this aspect, Greg Sterling, an analyst at Opus Research in San Francisco, said, “Apple is really under tremendous pressure to come out with something different and something new.”
“[Ive has] a tremendous sense of design, and he’s been the guru behind a lot of these enormously successful products, but he’s always had someone like a [Steve] Jobs to push back on him and give him some guidance, and it’s not clear that Tim Cook is capable of playing that role. Maybe without a collaborator, he’s not as strong,” he added.
A person briefed on Apple’s discussions with companies developing gesture technologies said Ive has shown interest in changing the way we use computers today.
He has reportedly envisioned a way for people to navigate their computers “by moving their hands -- without touching the screen.”
Ross Lovegrove, an industrial designer who has worked with Apple, is quoted as saying, “If the hardware is going to stay minimalist and reduced, I would say the next step would be to look at three-dimensional interfaces.”