Why The iPad Doesn't Have A Calculator

When the iPad was being created, a guy named Scott Forstall was leading its software development. He was responsible for the skeuomorphic interface featured early on in iOS, and the calculator app included with the iPad prototype was simply a scaled up version of the iPhone’s. The software team assumed the final product would ship with this calculator, but once Steve Jobs saw it one month before the iPad’s release, he met with Forstall right away. Saying, “where is the new design for the calculator? This looks awful” Forstall replied, “what new design? This is what we are shipping with.” Jobs said, “no, pull it. We can’t ship that.” Although Forstall tried to convince Jobs to keep the calculator on iPad, he was given an ultimatum: Redesign the calculator’s user interface to make it look good on the iPad’s larger display, or it won’t be included. With the iPad’s release just weeks away, Forstall knew his team wouldn’t be able to create a new app from scratch, so the original iPad shipped without a calculator.

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This Post Has 27 Comments

  1. i totally understand where these people are coming from. i do think they have waited too long though. the fact that its already been a decade kind of baffles me.

  2. 4:29 I don’t think leaving out an entire functionality is better than implementing an “ugly” one. And how much work can it be to just create a simple calculator… It’s not like you have to implement the calculating alghorithms manually. It’s just a button panel and an output (the OS has the calculating functions long time already of course).

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