Jony Ive, credited with designing many of Apple's most successful products, has been promoted to chief design officer.
Ive, 48, had previously served as the company's senior vice president of design.
The promotion was revealed in a story published Tuesday in the Telegraph. Ive told journalist Stephen Fry during a visit to Apple's Cupertino, Calif., headquarters that the new role would relieve him from some administrative and management work and give him more time to think and travel.
Among his sweeping duties: helping design Apple's new, in-the-works spaceship-style headquarters.
"Jony’s signature will be everywhere. The oak chairs, the desks which people can raise or lower with little buttons," Fry wrote. "I wonder if there is another company in the world whose lead designer fashions the patio furniture used by the employees, the vitrines in the retail outlets, the flow of an image swiped on a screen, the bevelling and sweep of the curve of a telephone and the packaging of a watch strap."
Ive, who was born in England and now resides in San Francisco, joined Apple in 1992 and had been one of Steve Jobs' closest confidants. He has maintained his prominence at the company under Chief Executive Tim Cook.
A few years ago, Cook gave Ive responsibility for Apple's human interface department on top of his role as head of industrial design.
With Ive's new role, Richard Howarth becomes Apple's new head of industrial design and Alan Dye is the new head of user interface.
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