When Apple brought in former HTC design chief Scott Croyle last year, it wasn't entirely clear why. It now seems that part of his job is to help with the design of Beats devices.
Design firm Ammunition is continuing to work on Beats products but Croyle is now a point person between the studio and Beats, according to 9to5Mac. New Beats products are said to be in the works, and the team has reportedly been studying audio products from other companies. It appears that Croyle isn't working on Beats full time, but is splitting his duties between the brand and Apple. Beats declined to comment to Engadget.
Although Beats has released several solid in-ear options over the last few years, the design of the over-ear headphones hadn't changed much until 2019's Beats Solo Pro. Having a respected designer at the helm could lead to more distinct or innovative Beats devices in the near future.
Croyle worked on Android products for over a decade before moving to Apple. He oversaw devices like the HTC One M7 and M8 before moving on to Nextbit, where he worked on the cloud-focused Nextbit Robin smartphone. Several months after Razer bought Nextbit, Croyle departed for a studio called Attic, where he stayed for almost three years. He joined Apple as a director in April 2020, as noted on his LinkedIn profile.
Along with Croyle's reported appointment as Beats design director, Apple has shaken up other aspects of the audio brand's leadership over the last year or so. Former Beats president Luke Wood stepped down from the position around the time Apple hired Croyle. Apple Music chief Oliver Schusser took over the division.
Update 5/14 2:07PM ET: Noted that Beats declined to comment on the report.