Jonathan Ive is now Apple’s Chief Design Officer

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Apple has promoted one of its most important executives, Sir Jonathan Ive, to lead the newly created Chief Design Officer role.

Jonathan previously held the role of senior vice president of design and helped in designing of some of the tech giant’s most popular gadgets including the iPod, iPhone, iPad and smartwatch. According to Cupertino, the reshuffle will free Ive from “day-to-day managerial responsibilities” allowing him to “think more freely.”

Although Ive will still be in overall charge of the Industrial Design and User Interface divisions at Apple post promotion, he will hand over the day-to-day responsibilities to Richard Howarth and Alan Dye respectively.

Richard Howarth will take over as the new Vice President of Industrial Design (ID) and Alan Dye will be the new Vice President of User Interface (UI) Design at Apple. Howarth has worked on the iPhone since the beginning. He has worked at Apple for over two decades. Alan has played a big role in the Apple Watch OS and the iOS 7 redesign. He joined Apple 9 years ago. The promotion will come into effect starting July 1.

In a memo sent out to Apple employees on Monday, CEO Tim Cook wrote “Jony is one of the most talented and accomplished designers of his generation, with an astonishing 5000 design and utility patents to his name. His new role is a reflection of the scope of work he has been doing at Apple for some time.

“Jony’s design responsibilities have expanded from hardware and, more recently, software UI to the look and feel of Apple retail stores, our new campus in Cupertino, product packaging and many other parts of our company.”

“As Chief Design Officer, Jony will remain responsible for all of our design, focusing entirely on current design projects, new ideas and future initiatives. On July 1, he will hand off his day-to-day managerial responsibilities of ID and UI to Richard Howarth, our new vice president of Industrial Design, and Alan Dye, our new vice president of User Interface Design.”