25 Years of the Mac
24 January 1984: Introducing Macintosh The revolutionary 128K, 8MHz Macintosh sets the agenda for Apple’s next two decades
1 March 1985: LaserWriter breaks barriers
Apple’s early mass-market laser printer becomes a key component in desktop publishing’s emergence
15 July 1985: The PageMaker revolution
In combination with the Mac and the LaserWriter, Aldus PageMaker 1.0 launches the desktop publishing revolution.
13 September 1985: Apple loses its core After losing a boardroom battle for control of the company, Apple co-founder Steve Jobs resigns to found Next.
16 January 1986: One Megabyte The Macintosh Plus features 1MB of RAM, an 800K floppy drive, and the Mac’s first SCSI interface
2 March 1987: Apple Desktop Bus Apple’s ADB port used for keyboards and other connections shows up on the Macintosh SE.
2 March 1987: Macintosh sees colours With six NuBus slots and the ability to produce colour graphics, the Macintosh II represents a drastic shift in Apple’s strategy.
October 1987: Taking Mac OS to task Apple releases its first official multitasking operating system, System 4.2, which provides co-operative multitasking via MultiFinder
17 March 1988: Copy cats Apple sues Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard for copyright violations over Windows 2.0.3’s icons
Image via GuideBook Gallery
19 September 1988: Super early SuperDrive The Macintosh IIx becomes the first model to include a 1.44MB SuperDrive floppy disk drive
20 September 1989: The portable Macintosh Although it’s far from perfect (it’s even far from portable by today’s standards), the Macintosh Portable finally made the Mac mobile
19 February 1990: Opening up shop Adobe’s famous image editor premieres exclusively on the Mac. Photoshop later makes its way to Windows (in 1992)
October 1990: Extension cord The Apple Extended Keyboard sets the standard for sound, feel, and durability in a keyboard
21 October 1991: PowerBooks turn heads (and Trackballs) Apple’s PowerBook 100, 140, and 170 revitalise notebook computing with their clever, compact and stylish designs
2 December 1991: Think quick Apple’s QuickTime multimedia software starts the Mac’s love affair with music and video
March 1992: Jonathan Ive joins the team
Ive’s design influence will extend to the iMac, the iPod, and beyond
19 October 1992: Dynamic duo The PowerBook Duo 210 (plus Duo Dock) is Apple’s first attempt at a laptop/desktop hybrid. Recent patents show that Apple still considers this a valid idea, even if it has no similar product in production at the moment.
10 February 1993: Portable palette The PowerBook 165c – Apple’s first colour laptop – makes its debut
3 August 1993: Apple launches the modern PDA The Newton MessagePad provides an early glimpse of touch-screen design
14 March 1994: The PowerPC transition The Power Macintosh 6100 is the first PowerPC Mac, and it sports a 60MHz PowerPC 601 CPU
16 May 1994: A touch of novelty The first integrated notebook trackpad appears on the PowerBook 500 series
27 March 1995: Attack of the Clones The Radius System 100, the first authorized Mac clone of the 1990s, debuts. The StarMax 3000/160MT Macintosh clone was manufactured by Motorola
February 1996: Serve it up The short-lived Apple Network Server ships with IBM’s Unix-based AIX operating system
7 August 1997:Bill Gates looms large Gates’s giant talking head and Steve Jobs announce a landmark Microsoft-Apple software and investment deal at Macworld Conference & Expo in Boston
14 August 1997: Think different The award-winning TBWA/CHIAT/Day ad campaign is born and still resonates with Mac users to this day.
2 September 1997: No more clones Realising that clones cost the company more money than they earn, Apple axes the Mac clone programme
16 September 1997: The second coming Steve Jobs returns to Apple and becomes interim CEO, drawing a yearly salary of $1
15 August 1998: iMac rewrites the Book of Mac Featuring USB ports, no floppy drive, a G3 Processor and an innovative all-in-one design, the first iMac causes tidal waves in the PC industry
15 October 1998: 8 isn’t enough Mac OS 8.5 becomes the first Apple OS version to run only on PowerPC-equipped Macs
21 July 1999: iBook cuts the wires With AirPort (on the colourful clamshell iBook), Apple starts the wireless networking revolution
5 October 1999: Apple goes to the movies iMovie 1.0 represents a breakthrough of easy-to-use video editing software for the masses.
19 July 2000: All hail the cube The stylish but impractical Power Macintosh G4 Cube makes its debut to critical excitement and consumer ambivalence. Apple axes it within a year
9 January 2001: Beautiful music iTunes 1.0 seems ho-hum at first, but it cleverly sets the stage for the iPod and the iTunes Store empire
Image via: DustinMacDonald.com
19 February 2001: The SuperDrive strikes back Apple releases the industry’s first combo CD and DVD burning optical drive, in the 733MHz Power Mac G4
24 March 2001: X marks the spot Apple begins its shift to the Unix-based Mac OS X complete with its flashy new interface, dock and pre-emptive multitasking technology.
23 October 2001: iPod rocks the music world One of the iPod pundits asks: “Who would want such a thing?” The answer: “Everybody”
7 January 2002 The iMac G4 blooms The iMac G4 turns heads with an integrated flat-panel display on a stylish, flexible arm
14 May 2002: Mac on a rack Apple ships the Xserve, a rack-mount Mac for server, educational and scientific markets
23 June 2003: Surfing Safari With Microsoft’s Internet Explorer for the Mac gone AWOL, Apple releases a lean, fast web browser: Safari
23 June 2003: G5 arrives Touted by Apple as the world’s fastest PC, the Power Mac G5 introduces the world to blazing speed and blazing cooling fans
28 June 2004: 30 inches or bust Apple calls its 30in Cinema Display “the largest high resolution display ever created”
11 January 2005: Not the Cube, we swear A new, low-end, consumer headless Mac, the Mac mini fares much better than its cubic predecessor
29 April 2005: Easy there, Tiger Apple sends Panther back to the jungle and releases the Tiger with OS X 10.4.
2 August 2005: Pushing buttons Twenty years of one-button history comes to an end as Apple introduces the Mighty Mouse
10 January 2006: Hell freezes over: Apple goes Intel Apple abandons the Motorola and IBM processors of its past and announces the first Macs powered by Intel chips
5 April 2006: Basic training Apple unveils Boot Camp, technology that lets Intel-based Macs run Windows natively
15 January 2008: Lighter than Air (and much more expensive) At 1.36kg and 1.94cm high, the MacBook Air becomes the lightest, thinnest Mac ever
14 October 2008: A solid case for success Apple’s MacBook and MacBook Pro goes through a radical redesign that involves carving each machine from a single block of aluminium. The process is referred to as ‘Unibody’ by Apple. The new MacBook is controversial and expensive, but environmentally friendly, technically powerful and exceptionally well made.