Have you ever bought a pair of scissors – the type packaged in a clear plastic heat sealed pack which no matter how you try to open it resists you every step of the way? In the end, the only thing to do is to get a pair of… oh wait! They are still inside the package.
Steve Jobs didn’t know anything special when he put together his products. He just articulated the truism about packaging and design solutions. They are an integral part of the look and feel of a product, but they are performing at the highest levels when they are disposable.
Think of it this way, the packaging matters a great deal right up to the moment you actually open the whatever it is you’re so excited about. Some people have a ritual when it comes to opening things. They do it slowly careful not to break anything. It is just a delaying technique. Once you’re on the inside the packaging has done its job and now the product must live up to its billing.
Countless hours go into packaging design. When you buy a pair of Joan and David shoes, inside the box is a soft material bag which you use to transport the shoes in. It isn’t necessary, it isn’t essential for the shoe ‘upkeep’ but it serves as a reminder of why you have these particular shoes and not the others that were next to them in the store.
Bad design is interesting too. You might not know why it is wrong, but your spidey-sense helps you know instinctively that it is. How is that possible?
Next time you think something is working really well. That the packaging designer, and know they spent hours getting it right.