updated 03:05 pm EDT, Mon March 14, 2011
Samsung rumored gettiing ex-BMW designer Bangle
Samsung may be hoping to spark its design by turning to an automotive expert for help, a Korean newspaper said late last week. Former BMW designer Chris Bangle would reportedly shape the look of future Samsung cellphones and notebooks. The Joongang rumor didn't say when he would start or if there was a given aim to the designs.
Bangle is best known for designing much of BMW's car line for the past decade. While the "flame surfaced" shapes became iconic for BMW, they were also criticized for using odd shapes that at some times scared off customers. The term "Bangle butt" became shorthand for cars like the 7 series and Z4 that many felt were made ugly by the design changes. He eventually left in March 2009, and the company began reverting to slightly more conservative shapes.
Any move may be an attempt to step up Samsung's own design, which itself has usually been safe. Much of Apple's success with the iPhone, even as it has had to compete against Android phones like Samsung's Galaxy S, has been associated with its easily recognized, often upscale design. Most Samsung phones are generic plastic, even including expensive flagships like the Galaxy S II.