You just know that flat screens with icons in a grid are the zeitgeist when even a carmaker’s display screen looks like an iPhone.

There were a few years around the turn of the millennium when a wild spectrum of appliance manufacturers were inspired by the translucent, colored plastics used by Apple lead designer Jonathan Ive for the original iMac. The future, as evidenced by a casual glimpse at household appliances, was about to turn bondi blue.


This did not happen, of course, mainly because Ive has since abandoned color and began to lead his team to create monochrome computers, like the latest iteration of his iMac, announced yesterday.

But Apple’s aesthetics creep through and define modern industrial design. Observe this info-display made by Toyota for last month’s Frankfurt Motor Show to advertise their new Prius: it is as close to an iPhone as you can get without actually manufacturing a handheld computing device with a multitouch screen.


I wouldn’t be surprised if our Ray Wert, currently prowling the Tokyo Motor Show, came across something very similar. Or perhaps a rapid-prototyped press freebie aping Apple’s new mouse. (Nope! Bupkiss. —Ed.)


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