If you’re a fan of Apple’s decision to move to rounded toggle buttons in iOS 5, and prefer the new design over the square alternatives found in iOS 4, then you’re experiencing the outcome of pure science, according to UX Movement.

What at first glace appears to be a minor aesthetic change actually has a scientific reasoning behind it, with rounded objects being easier to look at, and in turn, process…

The move to rounded corners also helps us focus on the box’s contents, with the inward-pointing corners bringing our gaze towards the content. Square boxes, on the other hand, make our eyes focus on what’s outside them. Not much use when we need to choose the right toggle in a Settings window.

“Rounded corners also point inward and focus your eyes on the content inside an object. A squared edge is the exact opposite — it focuses your eyes on the stuff outside of the object. When you look at the rectangular buttons of iOS 4, you have to work harder to shift your gaze from the outside to the inside of the button. In iOS 5, there’s little work involved. You look at the round button, your eyes focus inward and you make your selection with ease. “

Who knew designing a user interface was so complicated?


  • Mark

    Looks more like iPod Touch fourth generation style but on the iPhone, it doesn’t look that good.

    • David

      What are you talking about? I’m using the iPod touch 4th gen and mines aren’t rounded.

      • kokhean

        The iPhones are more squarish, and the iPod touch 4Gs are more rounded and therefore, more suitable for the iPod touch 4Gs.

  • ur mother

    i like rounded corners, they need to make a theme with winterboad for without for ios 4

    • ur mother

      does anybuddy know if there is a theme?

  • Jeffwatson22

    makes one wonder why they went from rounded buttons to square in Lion… Unless the “science” only applies to switches and not buttons then they took a step backwards in 10.7.

  • I wish some one will make a tweak for ios4 to make it rounded (not a theme x-x)

    • ur mother


      • Yboy403

        Not gonna happen. Any solution would have to replace the stock image files with rounded toggles, because (obviously) the iOS 5 images aren’t in 4.x.x. That, people, is called a theme. A tweak can only exist if the option already exists but is hidden—like multitasking gestures.

  • Alex

    I’ve seen a forum where they’re trying to make the toggles rounded. Although, the thread seems pretty dead.

  • I’ll apologize to the ladies in advance for what I’m about to write…… “Sorry”

    This science just reinforces what Men have known all along, round breasts are better than square ones!

    – Eric

    • ur mother

      thats was f*cking Awsome.

  • Angelo

    I want a theme which makes the buttons square formed again.

    • Yboy403

      I’m sure it’ll happen. There’s probably a way to go back to the iOS <= 3 dock as well.

      • Telejeesus

        What kinda dock iOS 5 have?

      • Angelo

        Yes i really hope so, sometimes science is for me like voodoo magic cause i didn’t feel affected by such things. It, just for me, looks really bad and annoys me. It also is not fitting with the iOS stock look cause App icons and boxes and simply the most stuff of the OS is square formed with rounded corners. So why in the world should i like toggles looking like they come from a other planet? (Or rather from an other OS)

      • Yboy403

        iOS 5 has the same dock as iOS 4, the shiny glass one. Not the old-school metal one from iPhone OS 3 and under.

  • Any way to get square ones?