Apple leading the way in product design, says Awards boss

By Patrick Avenell

SYDNEY, NSW: Apple has done more to encourage and foster good design principles than any other consumer brand, according to the managing director of Good Design Australia, the organisation that runs the Australian International Design Awards (AIDA).

Brandon Gein, who has worked on the awards for almost 20 years, credits Apple not only with increasing the importance of design in the consumer electronics industry, but also in other sectors and industries, such as the automotive and sport and leisure categories.

“Apple has probably done more for the promotion of design than any other organisation in the world,” Gein said. “They embed design in everything that they do, and it’s evident when you see the products that come out.”

“Where I think they’ve been incredibly smart is their clever blend of materials: everything’s aluminium and it’s all beautifully crafted and beautifully designed and certainly appealing to a customer.”

When asked if this strategy has affected other sectors, Gein replied, “I think so — consumers are placing a much greater emphasis on the design of a product.”

To back up this point, Gein revealed that a survey conducted of Australian consumers to discover how important product design was in the purchase decision making process revealed very positive results.

After ‘Value for Money’, the design of the product was the second most important factor, beating out other options including the brand name, discounting and the origin of the product.

“That was pleasing and surprising for us: design actually does rate and people do take notice of design,” Gein said.

“People being much more careful with their dollars and when they do spend it they want to make that they’re getting good value for money, that they’re getting a good product that’s going to offer them everything they want, plus more, and Apple does that, they’ve nailed it.”

Entries are now open for the 2011 Australian International Design Awards. For more information about the awards, check out the AIDA website.

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