Everything seems to be getting redone in concepts these days. With all the “skeumorphism” talks going on, some people being for and others against, it isn’t surprising to think that people would be expecting something new in iOS 7. Of course, Jony Ive being appointed as the lead designer of iOS probably has had an influence on these talks as well. If you are unfamiliar with the term skeumorphism (in UIs), it is when you take a physical design, such as wood or felt, and apply it to a digital interface. Those two examples, wood and felt, are found in today’s subject – Game Center.
Game Center is probably one of the best places to find skeumorphic design aside from Calendar or Notes. It has a wood looking design on the top and bottom Navigation and Tab bars, and a green felt background. Many have complained about this type of design, saying it is outdated, and no longer necessary. The reasoning for it is an attempt to make users feel “comfortable” with a familiar texture or interface. It is supposed to make it more welcoming. However, arguments against the design philosophy for applications such as Calendar state that the younger generation wouldn’t know what a paper desk Calendar looks like, and therefore would be confused at the design. In some cases this is true, and we are in this type of transition period.
As you can see above, designer Adrian Maciburko imagined his view of Game Center with a new “Crystal” interface. It goes away from the heavy skeumorphism that is seen in the current rendition of the software, yet there are still slight hints to it that would help those already familiar with the platform easily adjust. Personally, I’m not a fan of this new idea for a design, as to me it is too simple. However, I will agree that skeumorphism needs to be scaled back, quite a bit in some areas. Jony Ive has spoken out against it, so you can expect to see less in iOS 7 or the next version, if we had to guess.
What do you think? Sick of this design? Hope iOS 7 brings Ive’s design? Let us know in the comments, or tweet me @TiP_Kyle.