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Motorola president bites back at Jony Ive’s smack talk

by Todd Haselton | February 18, 2015February 18, 2015 8:00 pm PDT

rick-osterloh

Jony Ive recently had a few choice words for Motorola and its designers. Apple’s head design guru was featured in an article in The New Yorker earlier this week where he discussed everything from working with Tim Cook to the Apple Watch and his work on the iPhone 6 Plus. In the article, however, he suggested that Motorola’s decision to allow consumers to pick certain colors for their smartphones was lazy.

“Their value proposition was, ‘Make it whatever you want. You can choose whatever color you want,” Ive said. “And I believe that’s abdicating your responsibility as a designer.” Ive didn’t name Motorola by name, but was pretty clear in what firm he was “scathing about.” Motorola president Rick Osterloh recently responded to Ive’s smack talk in an interview with BBC.

“Our belief is that the end user should be directly involved in the process of designing products,” Osterloh explained. “And frankly , we’re taking a directly opposite approach to [Apple.]” He also suggested that consumers are paying out the nose for Apple’s products. “We do see a real dichotomy in this marketplace, where you’ve got people like Apple making so much money and charging such outrageous prices. We think that’s not the future,” Osterloh explained, noting Motorola’s continued efforts to provide smartphones for all market segments, including at more affordable prices but without too many sacrifices.

Motorola’s goal is to continue to build smartphones for consumers who “don’t want to spend a lot of money,” but still want “really good phones.” Osterloh’s comments suggest Moto Maker isn’t going anywhere soon, even if Jony Ive doesn’t like it.

BBC Re/code

Todd Haselton

Todd Haselton has been writing professionally since 2006 during his undergraduate days at Lehigh University. He started out as an intern with...

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