Illustration in the App Store

We don’t see this particular flavor of artistic ambition from many companies today, especially tech companies. The predominant mode of product design almost exclusively favors templates and automation, what can be done without human intervention. The very idea of asking living, breathing art directors who need to be paid real salaries to hire living, breathing illustrators who also need to be paid a living wage in order to create so-called works of art that have no demonstrably reproducible effect on actual profits is outlandish, absurd even. The mere suggestion would get you laughed off of most design teams in Silicon Valley. Design in this century has little use for anything that can’t be quantified.

The App Store in a post iOS 11 world is pretty great. Over the last few updates we can even update apps from other accounts without having to login, which is a great thing for people like me because I use another account to try out games that aren’t available worldwide yet. One underrated aspect is the curation bit and while it is pretty terrible in India on the App Store, what I see on the UK and US store fronts is almost always great.

The images and iconography created for the editorial content are really nice. This post highlights that aspect of the App Store curation and I’m blown away by some of the details. This is one of those “only Apple” things and I mean that in the best possible way.





Apple’s Inconsistencies in its Own iOS Apps

Benjamin Mayo takes a look at how inconsistent Apple is with its own design guidelines through iconography of the share sheet icon:

My gripe is there is no consistency, no structure or logic to this. Apps introduced later sometimes use rounded icons, sometimes not, sometimes create all-new custom glyphs of their own. Incredulously, you could open flagship apps like Messages, Mail and Safari1 and have no idea Apple was even playing with bold icons as a conceptual change. These apps adopted the iOS 11 large bold navigation bar title formats, but their icons and glyphs have stagnated for more than four years at this point.

This isn’t really new. I was just discussing with Preshit how few of Apple’s own apps I end up using on my iOS devices and how inconsistent their designs have been over the last few years. A lot of the subtle changes are good but inconsistencies like this are not good.


Panic is Working on Coda Next, and A Second Video Game After Firewatch

Panic, one of the most popular developers for quality iOS and Mac software, have published their 2017 Report that takes a look at what has happened at the company last year.

There’s a lot to gather from there, so I recommend that you add the URL to your favorite “read later” app. But if you’re still in a hurry, here are some notable bits from it:

The company released Transmit 5 and shipped a record total of 39 releases across all their apps. They also improved their QA process and their help library, started releasing tutorial videos on their official YouTube channel and also improved the infrastructure powering their websites.

In the coming months, Panic will publish Firewatch for Nintendo Switch and work is underway for “Coda Next”, which is what they’re calling “a total rewrite of our macOS version of Coda”. Last but not the least, there’s this:

A Second Game

Soon we will also announce the second video game we’ll be publishing! The follow-up to our hit game Firewatch will be a new game from a different studio that is not at all like Firewatch but is absolutely delightful. Keep an eye on our blog and Twitter for the big reveal.

Panic is one of the most revered companies out there, and I can’t wait to see what 2018 is going to be like for them.


Featured

Announcing a Few Changes to Beautiful Pixels


iPad

Screeny 2.0 Goes Beyond Screenshots, Lets You Delete Unwanted (Live) Photos & Videos