John Gruber wrote a very good piece on the Apple reshuffle. He wrote that Forstall is being pushed out the door, and if Gruber's assertions that Forstall is behind the hideous designs Apple have done lately are correct then I am cheering this announcement on.
Apple's iOS visuals haven't changed since 2007 when it was launched. Things got added on top, but the design didn't adapt for the new features nor was it improved upon. You may suggest it is pretty good the way it is and I would agree, but I would counter-argue that both the why and the way people use their phones now are much different to back then. The greatest designers in the world will tell you that no design is perfect; goals change, uses change and you uncover new knowledge. That you should always be reiterating on your designs (even if you've done 100 before that) while your skills and knowledge of the product do too. When the iPhone was released, its OS was the leader by miles, now it's pureÂ centimetres.
The new Metro interface looks gorgeous, and functional (whether or not it behaves that way - I'll leave that to you to decide.) The wealth of information seems much easier to read at a glance than iOS. It has the minimalistic and Swiss-like design Apple's hardware is known for. Perhaps we will see more of that.
Apple can do better. Much better. The overly designed skeuomorphicÂ approaches should have been a few iterations behind the final product. (Skeuomorphism isn't at fault here, it's the taste of the designer.) AnÂ exerciseÂ where the idea was to push it to it's limits, and then in future versions borrow elements without the design being 11. These ugly designs had a lot personality, something I'm hoping keeps with the new works by Ive. However, he can make a block of steel have tons of personality - and hopefully he can finally unify the design and hardware. I'm optimistic on this one.