“We’re starting to do some things differently”.
That’s what Phil Schiller supposedly said in February 2012 to blogger John Gruber at a one-to-one media briefing for the upcoming release of [Mac] OS X Mountain Lion.
If you needed further demonstration that Apple is looking beyond Steve Jobs and Tim Cook is doing things differently, the 30th anniversary of the Macintosh is quite a big proof.
Happy Birthday Mac! My life is infinitely better because we met. Today we salute everything you stand for. t.co/seLULo2cQ6
— Tim Cook (@tim_cook) January 24, 2014
Apple created a mini web site to celebrate the “Computer for the rest of us” with a video, pages for each and avery year with profiles about key developers, artists and teachers, stunning pictures of Macs from back then and even created a font with stylized Mac icons for almost every model ever released.
As Cook said at a Special Event which took place at the Apple Campus:
“We don’t spend a lot of time looking back.”
“We spend all of our time looking forward and working on the next big thing. But we’re making an exception for today, because 30 years ago today, the Macintosh was born.”
I can only agree. And while they get back to work and continue to look forward, Stories of Apple is here for you when you want to take a look back and see where Apple came from, so you can better understand where’s it’s headed.
On January 8, 2004, at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, Hewlett-Packard CEO Carly Fiorina brandished a blue device and proudly announced a deal with Apple. The agreement would produce the “Apple iPod by HP”, a market oddity which was made available nine months later and, after weak sales, was discontinued in 2005.
Also called the “Apple iPod + HP”, this was the first (and only) iPod license ever allowed: Apple would manufacture a version of the iPod for HP and the iTunes software would be pre-installed on all HP Pavilion and Compaq Presario computers. Although it was short-lived, at the time the deal made sense for both of the companies.
In 2004 the iPod franchise was a growing success but the digital player hadn’t yet conquered the bulk of the market (this would happen the next year, thanks to the iPod mini). Apple was interested in anything that would further grow its penetration and mindshare, in particular after the launch of the iTunes Store for Windows, which had debuted just three months prior. Thanks to HP’s distribution network, the “iPod + HP” would be sold in retailers where Apple lacked a presence, such as Wal-Mart, RadioShack, and Office Depot. (more…)
The G4 Cube, Airport technology, the iMac G4, the 12″ PowerBook, iTunes for Windows, the G5, the iPod mini, Safari for Windows, the first MacBook Pro, the iPod touch: these are very different products belonging to different product lines and different strategies. But they do have one thing in common. All of them have been introduced as… One More Thing.
For more than a decade Steve Jobs has topped off his already impressive presentations with a final jolt, using a technique made famous by actor Peter Falk in his Columbo role: employing a carefully staged offhand remark at the end of the show he revved up again the audience’s attention and ended the presentation with a bang.
Not all of Jobs presentations included a “One More Thing” or used these exact words, but many did and the technique proved very popular and iconic and the phrase was used – in 2005 – as the motto for one of Apple’s Special Events.
Jobs first used this technique in January 1998, at the MacWorld San Francisco. (more…)
Apple considered it to be its biggest opportunity since the introduction of the Macintosh and a chance to reinvent itself. But after ten years of development, spending more than 100 USD Million and five years on the market selling just 300000 units, it was clear that the Newton was not a new device “for the rest of us” and definitely not Infinite Loop’s future.
The project, started in 1987 as a pen computing platform and focused on a smaller size and scope after 1991 pitch by Product Marketing Manager Michael Tchao to Apple’s CEO John Sculley, was launched in 1993 and was killed in 1998 by the new interim CEO, Steve Jobs, who discontinued the last products to use Newton technology, the MessagePad 2100 and the eMate 300. [For the record, five months before Jobs had stated in an email that the eMate had a "bright future", and it looked like both the State of Texas and Australia were planning of adopting the device to replace students textbooks and aging PC computers, respectively.]
The Newton had failed on the market and Apple was betting all of its resources and money in the evolution of the Macintosh and a new NeXT-based operating system. Tchao had already left Apple, in 1994, as had the Newton’s main developers, Steve Capps and Walter Smith, who in 1996 seeked refuge at Microsoft. (more…)
In July 1993 Apple introduced two very special Macintosh models, the Centris 660AV and the Quadra 840AV. Although seemingly belonging to different product lines and featuring radically different cases and expandibility options, they shared most of their technology, and even more importantly, their raison d’etre.
The two Macs sported an unseen integration of audio, video and voice, setting a new market standard. The “AV” monicker after the model numbers meant that professional audio and video input and output capabilities were already included by Apple and there was no need for third-party expansions.
Both the Centris 660AV (code-named Tempest) and the 840AV (code-named Cyclone) were the first Macintoshes to support 16-bit 48 KHz stereo audio, and could record and play back sound at CD-quality. They also had S-Video and Composite video ins and outs so one could use them to digitize video from a camcorder or other source and route their video signals to a TV set or video recorder. They were also the first Macs that supported Apple’s speech recognition (PlainTalk) out of the box.
All of these amazing capabilities were possible thanks to new and more powerful hardware which had custom circuitry to handle the AV features. (more…)