Steve Jobs was never one to publicly compliment his competitors. But if had ever gotten a look at the Lumia 900 there would have been a lot for him to like.
At the core of Jobs' aesthetic was simplicity and the marriage of form and function. His design sense was heavily influenced by the sleek design of Cuisinart food processors made of light molded plastic, and by Braun appliances.
In addition, Jobs wanted his products almost to appear as if they were self-created, with no marks of the manufacturing process on them. Walter Isaacson, in his biography of Steve Jobs, tells the story of Jobs being disappointed by an otherwise beautiful knife made in France because a tiny bit of glue was visible between the knife's handle and blade. Isaacson quotes Jonathan Ive, Apple's design guru, as saying about him and Jobs:
"We don't like to think of our knives as being glued together. Steve and I care about things like that, which ruin the purity and detract from the essence of something like a utensil, and we think alike about how products should be made to look pure and seamless."
The Lumia 900 matches that aesthetic sensibility. It's about as pure and seamless-looking a phone as you can find. It's sleek-looking, and made of a single piece of scratch-resistant molded polyurethane plastic with a matte finish. It shows no marks of manufacturing. If Braun designed cellphones, they could have made the Lumia 900.
That's the physical device, of course. As for the Windows Phone operating system, Jobs was certainly no fan of Windows or of Microsoft's design prowess. But as for the Lumia 900 hardware, he likely would have admired it, despite himself.
This story, "Why Steve Jobs Would Have Admired the Lumia 900 " was originally published by Computerworld.