Steve Jobs 1984

Apple, the famous computer manufacturer, has not jumped straight to iconic status right after hitting the computer industry. The company after a great time of uphill struggle now has reached the top, where no other company today can even think of reaching. As mentioned above, Apple does not have a magical stick that took it to the top, but this is the outcome of collaboration of will power, toil, and thorough contribution of many genius minds.

Long time ago when the very first Apple computer was launched, nobody had an idea that the company some day will rule the computer industry. In this post, I am going to present all of you a small overview of the world of Apple computers and their evolution from ‘The Macintosh’ to ‘Apple iPhone’.

The Macintosh

The Macintosh was the first Apple computer with user-friendly GUI, all-in-one design, and innovative mouse, which brought a revolution to world of computers. You can say ‘The Macintosh’ was a computer to the world like wheel to the cave men.

In 1980s, computers were operated with text commands, which limited the audience to true geeks only. With the launch of very first computer with GUI, namely Lisa (for $9,995) in 1983, Apple declared itself the winner. Later on, another computer from Apple, called Mac was released for a price of $2,495, which captures the attention of people across the world, who had been using command-line language to operate early computers.

The PowerBook 100 series

Later in 1991, Apple launched their very first computer in the portable lineup, including three models – PowerBook 100, 140, and 170. This series of portable computers introduced the computer world with a 10-inch color display, which later became a proposal for other computer manufacturers.

Before this, the company was involved in development of a portable Mac computer – the Macintosh Portable – that later on when weighed 16 pounds was declared not so portable. The interesting feature adapted from ‘the Macintosh Portable’ to mobile computing was the trackball.

The PowerBook series of portable computers placed the keyboard near the display, providing enough space to the users to rest their palms, which is necessary to work for a long time. Moreover, the series brought in the company $1 billion in revenue in its debut year.

The Power Mac G3

After the return of CEO Steve Jobs, the Power Mac G3 is the very first Mac computer launched. On his return, he dismissed the license other computer manufacturers were sharing with Apple for products cloning. Steve Jobs also limited the development of multiple products to only a few ones.

Embedding G3 chip of Motorola, the ‘Power Macintosh G3’ represented a great improvement in performance, thereby consuming far less power, and it later became Apple’s step towards the usage of industry–standard components cutting costs.

The iMac

The iMac was the most distinctive and colorful computer from Apple, which acquired space on your computer desk without more ado. It looked quite interesting and featured G3 processor, but it did not include legacy ports as some earlier computers did. Instead, this Apple computer was based on USB (Universal Serial Bus) technology, offering plug-and-play switching between multiple devices.

The hot change in the iMac was the lack of floppy drive, which became the first computer to avoid a floppy drive. The iMac was sold at a price of $1,229 with a 4GB HDD and 15-inch display.

The PowerBook G3 “Wallstreet”

The PowerBook G3 was the very first computer in Apple’s portable lineup, which included Motorola G3 chip set and a 14.1-inch display enclosed in a lighter package. This portable computer had been one of the most expensive computers designed and marketed by Apple. The laptop contained two docking bays to hold battery, and an optical drive.

The Wallstreet version reached its apex along with the Pismo version, having features, like the best design, high versatility, and power. Later in 2000, the Pismo incorporated all the features that the Wallstreet version was providing. Besides, the design was lighter, thinner, a FireWire 400 port, and most importantly, the hardware was much faster.

The iBook

In 1999, Apple released another successor of its computer series, namely the iBook, having a design to be thrown into a backpack, polycarbonate cladding, tough plastic exterior, and a rubber trim of bold blue or orange color. In fact, the iBook was the very first laptop from Apple, having no latch. Besides, in favor of USB, iBook ditched all legacy ports, and provided a handle.

The iBook was the first Apple laptop to ship a circular charger facilitating wireless charging. Moreover, it displayed wireless networking for the first time in a consumer device.

The Power Mac G4 Cube

Released in 2000 and sold in only 2000 and 2001, the Power Mac G4 Cube was awarded so many times for its design. Besides, this model of Apple computer was put into Museum of Modern Art. In fact, this computer was the hottest release from Apple, which is the reason it was highlighted the most.

As per the design, the 8-inch cubic design of technology suspended in acrylic enclosure of 10-inch. The design was based on optical vertical drive, featuring a touch sensor pulsed with a white light when it was turned on. This design was the most compact design of Apple’s desktop, which uses G4 processor.

The iMac (Intel-based)

In 2006, Apple left behind the PowerPC Architecture, as it was all set to move to Intel’s Core Duo Processor. The prime reason Apple cited was its way to develop thinner, lighter, and more compact computers, offering high-performance and power-efficiency, which has not been feasible with PowerPC devices.

It was Macworld Expo on Jan 10, 2006, when Apple publically announced iMac be the next Apple computer featuring Intel chip set. However, the price of the new computer was not changed to make consumers believe that the new computer was still a Mac, though the hardware was completely new.

The MacBook Air

With the successful launch of the MacBook Air in 2008 Macworld Expo, Apple finally ventured into the territory of ultraportable computers. As per the system configuration, MacBook Air lacked inbuilt optical drive, and had no FireWire ports, no expansion card slots, but only a single USB port.

This ultraportable Apple computer contained 13-inch display, in order to provide space for a full-sized keyboard. Another interesting feature was an optional Solid State Drive (SSD) and 1.6 or 1.8 GHz processor. It reduced the chip’s packaging size by 60 percent with no change in its performance.

The iPhone/iPod touch

In 2007 Macworld Expo, Apple announced its brand new product – the iPhone, which later (after six months) hit the market. The iPhone featured Core Animation and many other technologies that never ever hit the market. In fact, what iPhone did to the mobile market was exactly same as what Mac did to the computer market.

Later on, Apple launched another product, namely iPod touch, having similar features except the cell phone features, such as making calls and send/receive messages. The users were able to download and use the applications available in the App Store.

Author Bio: Vishal is a technical writer who covers topic on Mac OS X. He keeps experimenting on his MacBook Pro and share useful information with Mac users. You can catch him on Facebook & Google + for more updates on OS X.