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03/14/2011

Former BMW designer to style phones at Samsung

BMW7 hydrogen An American known for controversial car designs at BMW has been linked to a job at Samsung.

Chris Bangle, known for making the back of the BMW 7 Series so awkward it was nicknamed as having a “Bangle Butt” will work with Samsung to design smart phones and netbooks.

Reports from a Korean newspaper say the company wants to put an emphasis on its design. With Bangle on the books, they shouldn’t have a problem doing so.

Bangle worked at BMW for 17 years, calling it quits in 2009 to focus on his own projects.

During his tenure, the Bavarian automaker pumped out some of the most outrageous car designs with vehicles wearing a technique Bangle called “flame surfacing.”

I’m not entirely sure how much flame surfacing we’ll find on future Samsung phones and netbooks, but there’s no doubt design plays a huge roll in electronics’ sex appeal.

Let’s be honest: if the iPhone 4 looked more like a slab of wax, I doubt it would be selling so well.  

Samsung won’t have Bangle all to themselves – he’s apparently able to work on outside projects as well (though, probably not for any competitors).

But the electronics company is going to make sure they get their money’s worth. AutoBlog reports that Samsung is setting up a European design studio just for the American to help design phones and netbooks for the Korean company.

Samsung will also staff it with about 10 “researchers” to collaborate with him.

How important is a smart phone’s design to you? Does it matter what a phone looks like?

- Maurice Cacho, MSN Tech & Gadgets

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Danny BradburyDanny Bradbury

Danny Bradbury is a technology journalist with 20 years' experience. He writes regularly for publications including the Guardian, the Financial Times, the Financial Post, and Backbone magazine. Danny also writes and directs documentaries.

Maurice CachoMaurice Cacho

Maurice Cacho is a Toronto-based journalist mixing his love for tech with a passion for news. He's also CP24's Web Journalist and appears daily on CP24 Breakfast and weekly on the channel's tech show, Webnation, discussing tech news and trends.

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