AAPL Stock: 118.37 ( + 0.07 )

Printed from

Apple releases iPhone design handbook

updated 09:35 am EDT, Mon October 1, 2007

iPhone interface handbook

Through its Developer Connection site, Apple has released a new design document, the iPhone Human Interface Guidelines. Also available as a PDF file, the document explains key concepts behind creating applications for the iPhone, which are only officially intended to be run via the Safari web browser. Designers must for instance adjust to the lack of multi-layered windows or a client-side file system, and instead operate solely through AJAX, HTML, CSS and built-in media player functions.

The Guidelines are broken into several sections, describing aspects such as exact dimensions for buttons and windows, how and where an iPhone is likely to be used, and Apple's guiding principles, including "simplicity," "adaptability" and "consistency." Apple places particular emphasis on this last point, suggesting that developers mimic the iPhone's native controls as closely as possible, using CSS styles as a way of conforming even standard websites to iPhone users.

The introduction of the guide contains wording, however, that suggests Apple still intends to allow installed software on iPhones eventually, despite the company having broken hacks with its 1.1.1 firmware update. Unofficial software has included everything from chat clients to game emulators. "Currently," the introduction reads, "developers create web applications for iPhone, not native applications. Therefore, this document focuses solely on the presentation of web applications and other web content on iPhone."

by MacNN Staff




  1. Ikon

    Joined: Dec 1969



    users and developers!

    Way to go apple!

    give us an SDK

  1. Chris Paveglio

    Joined: Dec 1969


    Apple, WTF?

    Just open the darn thing to REAL applications and be done with it!

  1. petsounds

    Joined: Dec 1969


    human interface

    Apple needs to publish some Human Interface Guidelines for itself, because it obviously forgot how to interact with its users properly.


    Joined: Dec 1969



    Apple is being stupid on this one. Niche player in the end like the Mac. Lesson never learned. Pretty sad. They should allow 3rd party software after Apple testing and approved install certification. Heck put in encryption methods to only allow authorized apple certified apps to install. Why can't they do that? At least it will get some 3rd party software in there.

  1. rok

    Joined: Dec 1969


    guidelines shell game

    okay, show of hands = how long before apple starts breaking THESE human interface guidelines whenever it suits them?

  1. hezekiahb

    Joined: Dec 1969


    buying time

    Apple's just buying time to allow support to be built up for the iPhone before they just open it up. If they opened it up right away they would be swamped with reports of apps breaking the system. After they've made a little money they'll ramp up support & then really start offering the cool features we all dream of.

    Not everyone has tons of money to just throw at failures like Microsoft, some companies actually need a plan for entering a market besides just throwing money at it.

  1. Constable Odo

    Joined: Dec 1969


    I think Apple satisfies..

    ..95% of it's user base. It's just a few crybabies that are always complaining about what they're not allowed to do although the device hasn't even been on the market for six months. If a person doesn't want to play by Apple's rules, then please, please, please don't buy Apple products.

    Since you clearly don't have patience, then any new device is clearly not for you. Get a device that has been on the market for a few years. I guess there's no sense in having WinMo6 since they should have got everything right in WinMo1.

    Mark my words. Within a short while of Leopard's introduction there will be a major iPhone firmware/software upgrade that will please the majority of users.

Login Here

Not a member of the MacNN forums? Register now for free.


Network Headlines

Follow us on Facebook


Most Popular


Recent Reviews

Ultimate Ears Megaboom Bluetooth Speaker

Ultimate Ears (now owned by Logitech) has found great success in the marketplace with its "Boom" series of Bluetooth speakers, a mod ...

Kinivo URBN Premium Bluetooth Headphones

We love music, and we're willing to bet that you do, too. If you're like us, you probably spend a good portion of your time wearing ...

Jamstik+ MIDI Controller

For a long time the MIDI world has been dominated by keyboard-inspired controllers. Times are changing however, and we are slowly star ...


Most Commented