Amazon's Kindle has a definitely "retro" design, one that Philippe Starck has commented as being "a little sad." Frankly, we agree. A device like this, with so many features, seems to have missed being designed as well on the outside as the inside.
But to play our own devil's advocate, we can see the merits of its simple, almost retro design as a way to have those in their target market (not young adults and teens) see the item as something they can relate to, without being complicated by confusing design. We can see the merits of Kindle designers arguing for a less-sophisticated design, at least in the products first generation.
OK, really, we don't think their "target market" is that dumb. But do consider the transition of the iPod over time to what it's become today...there's definitely room for much improvement in the Kindle world of design. We'll be anxious to see how they're able to improve design with each new Kindle generation.
P.S. Does anyone else find it ironic that Phillipe's wearing massive shoulder pads while calling the Kindle retro??
- iPod 1st Gen pic from John Zeratsky.
- iPod latest gen pic from Apple.
- Kindle pic from Amazon.