Apple and Jony Ive, who Steve Jobs once said had “more operational power than anyone else at Apple except me,” have parted ways.
Ive and Apple have agreed to stop working together after they were unable to agree on terms of a contract renewal, reports the New York Times. Ive left Apple in 2019 to start an independent design studio called LoveFrom, but said at the time he looked forward to working with the company “for many years to come.”
The multiyear contract between the two was valued at over $100 million, but it required Ive to obtain Apple’s clearance before he could take on new clients (which include Airbnb). Ive reportedly bristled at that, and some Apple executives were uncomfortable with the amount of the contract, as well as the fact that several designers had left to join LoveFrom.
Ive began making his mark at Apple in the late 1990s with the design of the iMac, which transformed computers from beige boxes into candy-colored gumdrops, with a translucent plastic case. He played a pivotal role in the design of the iPod and iPhone and was credited with designing the iPod’s white earbuds. He also oversaw development of the Apple Watch.
After Jobs’ death, Ive reportedly clashed with Tim Cook (something Cook has disputed). In 2015, he went part-time with the company and departed to start his own business four years later.
Ive’s last—and perhaps most lasting—legacy at Apple was the design of its spaceship-like headquarters.