Apple has confirmed its big WWDC keynote will take place in San Francisco on June 10, and the highlight is set to be the latest refresh of iOS, set to tick over to its seventh full version.
And iOS 7 is likely to mark the biggest shift in Apple's mobile platform since it first arrived with the original iPhone all those years ago, thanks to the involvement of a certain Jony Ive.
Apple's senior VP of industrial design has been closely involved in iOS 7's development, filling the void left by the departing Scott Forstall.
And his touch is said to be clearly visible in all aspects of the OS. Earlier this month we were told the Apple OS was a lot “flatter” than before (in other words fewer steps/screens to wade through to reach individual features and functions), and now we have a new soundbite: “black, white and flat all over”.
That's the word from 9to5Mac's sources, and it refers specifically to the dropping of heavily textured graphics from iOS' look and feel in favour of a more stark, or “black and white”, visual character. No more skeuomorphism, in other words (to use the word that's suddenly become fashionable as a result).
Ive's reasoning, according to sources familiar with Apple's iOS design meetings, is that ultra-realistic designs tend not to be enduring as they're always being fine-tuned.
Ive is also reportedly not happy with the fact that iOS applications currently reflect several differing designs, and his implemented changes to return to a unified look and feel throughout the OS.
For more details on exactly how that's been achieved, and what “black, white and flat all over” actually means in everyday terms, the lengthy 9to5Mac piece is well worth a read.