Is Apple ditching skeuomorphic design?

Apple updates Podcasts app, swapping skeuomorphism for something closer to flat design. Is this the shape of things to come from Cupertino?

The Jony Ive era of iOS app design appears to be well underway, as Apple pulls back the skeuomorphism for its Podcasts app. Podcasts was probably the most skeumorph-laden app in Apple's locker, featuring an animated reel-to-reel analogue tape player with pleasingly (or annoyingly, depending on your point of view) realistic movement particularly when pausing and skipping backwards and forwards.

Apple has been accused of overdoing skeuomorphism - defined here - in its app design for the last two years, but since Sir Jonathan Ive was given creative control of the company's app design late last year, the mobile design world has been awaiting the first signs of a design revolution initiated by 'the new Steve Jobs'.

With flat design currently the predominant app design language, Apple's skeuomorphism has looked increasingly long-in-the-tooth. So could the new-look Podcasts be the turning point in the Cupertino company's app design, and a hint to the much-anticipated iOS7?

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Is skeumorphism now officially dead? Is flat design the future? Let us know your views in the comments below...