‘The iOS App Icon Book’ review: A charming tribute to the beautiful iPhone icons

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App icons come, icons go, and soon iOS 7 The app icons have also been radically reworked. “The iOS App Icon Book” is a totally cool celebration of app icon art.

It’s hard to accept any details of something as huge as Iphone You can already get lost in history. But at least it goes that way, and among many other things, this new book is a powerful attempt to grab the best of what we lose.

Specifically, the icons for the apps you’ll swear by have not changed since the iPhone was introduced in 2007. When we stick to an app for years, sometimes a decade or more, we don’t notice how much their icons have changed.

And the best part about this book by designer Michael Flarup is when he outlines some of these changes.

The purpose of the book

Now on sale, at least until the first edition runs out, “The iOS App Icon Book” is half a book for you to dip in and out of, and half for you to read well. It offers countless app icons in different sizes, some of which show their evolution in a series.

So far, it’s been a Kickstarter project, with 1,450 backers tracking its progress. This progress included details about design issues related to the Design Book, in particular how difficult it is to accurately reproduce the colors of a digital code in print.

Then in December 2021, artist and designer Michael Flarob announced the results of the crowdfunding campaign.

“We did it! We got the iOS App Icon Book funded by a whopping 1362%,” he wrote. When campaign time ran out, 1,450 supporters pledged 136,420 (about $155,000 or DKK 1,000,000 (S).”

“We are the most crowdfunded publication ever published from Denmark,” Flarup continued. “We’ve sold about 1,600 books and are looking at a much larger first edition than I could have ever dreamed of.”

“iOS App Icon Book” hardback, 164 pages, and printed in full color. These pages contain countless codes, but they also contain dozens of double-sided pages that include interviews with designers or design firms.

Then there are four short chapters on the history of iOS icons, as well as instructions on how to draw effective icons.

read the book

You’ll first go to look for favorite app icons, and you’ll most likely find them – if they’re from third-part developers. Except for Apple Notes and Xcode, there are no Apple app icons in the book.

Besides all the icons, there are two-page interviews with app icon designers

This is a shame because it has been great to follow all the stock applications through their different generations. But then in general, that series of high-end apps are the most interesting, so it was nice to have more of them.

It’s a balance of details, though, and if you wish your favorites were given this evolution coverage, the people who get them are well-chosen.

Even after browsing the book once, it’s hard not to keep perusing through the same app code pages. What was originally seen on the iPhone as the smallest possible piece of art, is now shown here in larger, richer views.

The chapters written on icon design and the history of icons are very short. Instead of being somehow poorer for it, it’s done well – it always makes you want more.

must buy

yes. Specifically, buy this hardcover while the print is still running because while there are sure to be future prints, there won’t be an eBook release.

  • Beautifully designed book
  • Fantastic designer profiles
  • Exact details of how to design app icons
  • Contains countless favorite app icons
  • Includes the evolution of some major icons over the years
  • Almost no icons from Apple
  • More evolution series will be good

Rating: 5 out of 5