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VP of Design at Nokia interviewed by The Guardian

The Guardian has interviewed Marko Ahtisaari (seen above), executive vice president of design at Nokia. Being responsible for the look and feel of the Lumia family of handsets, Ahtisaari was questioned on how the unique polycarbonate body design (Lumia 800 and 900) came to be, the partnership (and integration) with Microsoft, and what will be brought to the table by Nokia next. 

"Live Tiles; they're abstractions of data, a panoramic view of your data. It's a different approach - 'glanceability', such as in the People Hub. Our goal in the studio is to design so that people can have their head up again. Touchscreen designs are often immersive; we'll often see couples in a restaurant pinching and zooming, but not interacting with each other. And there's a trend of having smaller and smaller targets on screen so you have to get closer and closer.If we can make the interfaces more direct, so you can have your head up again – this is something that, while it would never come up in a focus group, is deeply appreciated by people, because the most important things are happening not only in the vessel of your phone, but also with the people and the environment around you."

Discussing MeeGo, iOS and Android, Ahtisaari speaks highly of the platform UIs, but notes fragmentation and lack of evolution since  innovation (especially the case with iOS). We shouldn't view what's currently available as the end of user interface development, he continues:

"They will be more diversity in user interface because you can design more ways to use a phone. Some people would say that the iPhone is the new generic form. My point is more about competitive diversity. What's really important is that this isn't styling. This aesthetic come from the way that we build the product."

Head over to The Guardian to read up on the interview in full. There's more to come from the Finnish manufacturer, which can only be good news for Windows Phone.

Source: The Guardian (image credit), thanks @samsabri for the tip!

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • The design is awesome for the 900/800/n9 but we all know the idea has been used before for the iPod nano maybe Microsoft can work with DELL to get ther Xbox hardware better or Nokia can put out some ideas
  • I really don't get this talk of the Lumia design "been used before". Of course there some minor similarities between iPod Nano and Lumia (rectangular, rounded corners, comes in multiple colors) but there are enogh differences that are really innovative like the screen with curved edges or the unibody design.
    And of course every design borows and improves on previous ideas. Here's a nice article (no need to read ;-) just scroll to the bottom) which illustrates the similarities between Apple design and where it comes from
    Or read this shorter blog post, that also has a picture of the Braun portable radio on which the iPod nano design is "based":
  • Thanks for the links. Personally I'm fed up with the whole Lumia/Nano comparison.
  • But to say that no one gets ideas from others would be funny cuz even apple uses
    ideas from others we all get ideas from others
  • But to say that no one gets ideas from others would be funny cuz even apple uses ideas from others we all get ideas from others
  • What a spammer... Its not an iPod... Most phones have 4 corners... Maybe that's apples design too...
  • Everybody copies each other.. But the metro UI is just awesome on my fingers.. FYI im adding the 710 to my account just because
  • Is it just me, or does this guy really has a ''creepy'' posture :o
  • I hadn't noticed that, but now that you mention it I see it as well.
  • I'm a Microsoft fan and not an android r apple fan so dnt think I am lol im buying the 900 wen it comes out in the US on ATT I have a Samsung focus now and iv converted people already so remember im on Microsofts side
  • Glad you guys posted this. It was too good a read to not share with the community. 
  • I have never owned a Nokia because I have favoured brands like Samsung and Motorola. The sex appeal of the lumia is enough to make me consider going with Nokia. Saying the lumia looks like an iPod nano is really grasping at straws.