“Yes, Jony [Ive] is really key,” Cook said in response to a question about whether the design chief would have his fingerprints on the next version of iOS, due to be unveiled next month.

Cook touted the elegance of a design that melded hardware and software tightly as something that Apple focused on, which was the point of the recent executive shakeup.

“We recognized that Jony had contributed significantly to the look and feel of Apple for many, many years and could do that for software as well, and I think it’s absolutely incredible,” said Cook.

Cook said that the executive reshuffling of last year, which saw the ouster of Scott Forstall as the head of iOS, was all about encouraging cooperation between departments, in order to better meld the hardware and software halves of iOS.

Cook said that the future of iOS and OS X would be announced at WWDC next month.