Apple was established on April 1, 1976, by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak and Ronald Wayne to sell the Apple I personal computer kit. The kits were hand-built by Wozniak and first shown to the public at the Homebrew Computer Club. The Apple I was sold as a motherboard (with CPU, RAM, and basic textual-video chips), which is less than what is today considered a complete personal computer. The Apple I went on sale in July 1976 and was market-priced at $666.66 ($2,690 in 2013 dollars, adjusted for inflation).
Apple was incorporated January 3, 1977, without Wayne, who sold his share of the company back to Jobs and Wozniak for $800. Multi-millionaire Mike Markkula provided essential business expertise and funding of $250,000 during the incorporation of Apple.
The Apple II was introduced on April 16, 1977, at the first West Coast Computer Faire. It differed from its major rivals, the TRS-80 and Commodore PET, due to its character cell-based color graphics and an open architecture. While early models used ordinary cassette tapes as storage devices, they were superseded by the introduction of a 5 1/4 inch floppy disk drive and interface, the Disk II.
The Apple II was chosen to be the desktop platform for the first "killer app" of the business world, VisiCalc, a spreadsheet program. VisiCalc created a business market for the Apple II and gave home users compatibility with the office, an additional reason to buy an Apple II. Apple was a distant third place to Commodore and Tandy until VisiCalc came along.
By the end of the 1970s, Apple had a staff of computer designers and a production line. The company introduced the Apple III in May 1980 in an attempt to compete with IBM and Microsoft in the business and corporate computing market.
Jobs and several Apple employees, including Jef Raskin, visited Xerox PARC in December 1979 to see the Xerox Alto. Xerox granted Apple engineers three days of access to the PARC facilities in return for the option to buy 100,000 shares (800,000 split-adjusted shares) of Apple at the pre-IPO price of $10 a share. Jobs was immediately convinced that all future computers would use a graphical user interface (GUI), and development of a GUI began for the Apple Lisa.
On December 12, 1980, Apple went public at $22 per share, generating more capital than any IPO since Ford Motor Company in 1956 and instantly creating more millionaires (about 300) than any company in history.1981–85: Lisa and Macintosh Apple's "1984" television ad, set in a dystopian future modeled after the George Orwell novel Nineteen Eighty-Four, set the tone for the introduction of the Macintosh.
Steve Jobs began working on the Apple Lisa in 1978, but in 1982, he was pushed from the Lisa team due to infighting. Jobs took over Jef Raskin's low-cost-computer project, the Macintosh. A race broke out between the Lisa team and the Macintosh team over which product would ship first. Lisa won the race in 1983 and became the first personal computer sold to the public with a GUI, but was a commercial failure due to its high price tag and limited software titles.The first Macintosh, released in 1984
In 1984, Apple next launched the Macintosh. Its debut was announced by the now famous $1.5 million television commercial "1984". It was directed by Ridley Scott and was aired during the third quarter of Super Bowl XVIII on January 22, 1984. It is now hailed as a watershed event for Apple's success and a "masterpiece".
The Macintosh initially sold well, but follow-up sales were not strong due to its high price and limited range of software titles. The Macintosh was the first personal computer to be sold without a programming language at all.
The machine's fortunes changed with the introduction of the LaserWriter, the first PostScript laser printer to be sold at a reasonable price, and PageMaker, an early desktop publishing package. It has been suggested that the combination of these three products was responsible for the creation of the desktop publishing market. The Mac was particularly powerful in the desktop publishing market due to its advanced graphics capabilities, which had necessarily been built in to create the intuitive Macintosh GUI.
In 1985 a power struggle developed between Jobs and CEO John Sculley, who had been hired two years earlier. The Apple board of directors instructed Sculley to "contain" Jobs and limit his ability to launch expensive forays into untested products. Rather than submit to Sculley's direction, Jobs attempted to oust him from his leadership role at Apple. Sculley found out that Jobs had been attempting to organize a coup and called a board meeting at which Apple's board of directors sided with Sculley and removed Jobs from his managerial duties. Jobs resigned from Apple and founded NeXT Inc. the same year.1986–97: Decline See also: Timeline of Apple II family and Timeline of Macintosh models The Macintosh Portable was Apple's first "portable" Macintosh computer, released in 1989.
The Macintosh Portable was introduced in 1989 and was designed to be just as powerful as a desktop Macintosh, but weighed a bulky 7.5 kilograms (17 lb) with a 12-hour battery life. After the Macintosh Portable, Apple introduced the PowerBook in 1991. The same year, Apple introduced System 7, a major upgrade to the operating system which added color to the interface and introduced new networking capabilities. It remained the architectural basis for Mac OS until 2001.
The success of the PowerBook and other products brought increasing revenue. For some time, Apple was doing incredibly well, introducing fresh new products and generating increasing profits in the process. The magazine MacAddict named the period between 1989 and 1991 as the "first golden age" of the Macintosh.
Following the success of the Macintosh LC, Apple introduced the Centris line, a low-end Quadra, and the ill-fated Performa line that was sold with an overwhelming number of configurations and software bundles to avoid competing with the various consumer outlets such as Sears, Price Club, and Wal-Mart (the primary dealers for these models). Consumers ended up confused and did not understand the difference between models.
During this time Apple experimented with a number of other failed consumer targeted products including digital cameras, portable CD audio players, speakers, video consoles, and TV appliances. Enormous resources were also invested in the problem-plagued Newton division based on John Sculley's unrealistic market forecasts. Ultimately, none of these products helped, as Apple's market share and stock prices continued to slide.
Apple saw the Apple II series as too expensive to produce, while taking away sales from the low end Macintosh. In 1990, Apple released the Macintosh LC with a single expansion slot for the Apple IIe Card to migrate Apple II users to the Macintosh platform. Apple stopped selling the Apple IIe in 1993.
Microsoft continued to gain market share with Windows focusing on delivering software to cheap commodity personal computers while Apple was delivering a richly engineered, but expensive, experience. Apple relied on high profit margins and never developed a clear response. Instead, they sued Microsoft for using a graphical user interface similar to the Apple Lisa in Apple Computer, Inc. v. Microsoft Corporation. The lawsuit dragged on for years before it was finally dismissed. At the same time, a series of major product flops and missed deadlines sullied Apple's reputation, and Sculley was replaced as CEO by Michael Spindler.The Newton was Apple's first foray into the PDA markets, as well as one of the first in the industry. Despite being a financial flop at the time of its release, it helped pave the way for the Palm Pilot and Apple's own iPhone and iPad in the future.
By the early 1990s, Apple was developing alternative platforms to the Macintosh, such as the A/UX. Apple had also begun to experiment in providing a Mac-only online portal which they called eWorld, developed in collaboration with America Online and designed as a Mac-friendly alternative to other online services such as CompuServe. The Macintosh platform was itself becoming outdated because it was not built for multitasking, and several important software routines were programmed directly into the hardware. In addition, Apple was facing competition from OS/2 and UNIX vendors such as Sun Microsystems. The Macintosh would need to be replaced by a new platform, or reworked to run on more powerful hardware.
In 1994, Apple allied with IBM and Motorola in the AIM alliance. The goal was to create a new computing platform (the PowerPC Reference Platform), which would use IBM and Motorola hardware coupled with Apple's software. The AIM alliance hoped that PReP's performance and Apple's software would leave the PC far behind, thus countering Microsoft. The same year, Apple introduced the Power Macintosh, the first of many Apple computers to use Motorola's PowerPC processor.
In 1996, Michael Spindler was replaced by Gil Amelio as CEO. Gil Amelio made many changes at Apple, including extensive layoffs. After numerous failed attempts to improve Mac OS, first with the Taligent project, then later with Copland and Gershwin, Amelio chose to purchase NeXT and its NeXTSTEP operating system, bringing Steve Jobs back to Apple as an advisor. On July 9, 1997, Gil Amelio was ousted by the board of directors after overseeing a three-year record-low stock price and crippling financial losses. Jobs became the interim CEO and began restructuring the company's product line.
At the 1997 Macworld Expo, Steve Jobs announced that Apple would join Microsoft to release new versions of Microsoft Office for the Macintosh, and that Microsoft made a $150 million investment in non-voting Apple stock.
On November 10, 1997, Apple introduced the Apple Online Store, tied to a new build-to-order manufacturing strategy.1998–2005: Return to profitability
On August 15, 1998, Apple introduced a new all-in-one computer reminiscent of the Macintosh 128K: the iMac. The iMac design team was led by Jonathan Ive, who would later design the iPod and the iPhone. The iMac featured modern technology and a unique design, and sold almost 800,000 units in its first five months.
Through this period, Apple purchased several companies to create a portfolio of professional and consumer-oriented digital production software. In 1998, Apple announced the purchase of Macromedia's Final Cut software, signaling its expansion into the digital video editing market. The following year, Apple released two video editing products: iMovie for consumers and, for professionals, Final Cut Pro, which has gone on to be a significant video-editing program, with 800,000 registered users in early 2007. In 2002, Apple purchased Nothing Real for their advanced digital compositing application Shake, as well as Emagic for their music productivity application Logic, which led to the development of their consumer-level GarageBand application. iPhoto's release the same year completed the iLife suite.Apple retail stores allow potential customers to use floor models without making a purchase. (Apple Store, North Michigan Avenue, Chicago, Illinois in 2005)
Mac OS X, based on NeXT's OPENSTEP and BSD Unix was released on March 24, 2001, after several years of development. Aimed at consumers and professionals alike, Mac OS X aimed to combine the stability, reliability and security of Unix with the ease of use afforded by an overhauled user interface. To aid users in migrating from Mac OS 9, the new operating system allowed the use of OS 9 applications through Mac OS X's Classic environment.
On May 19, 2001, Apple opened the first official Apple Retail Stores in Virginia and California. On July 9, they bought Spruce Technologies, a DVD authoring company. On October 23 of the same year, Apple announced the iPod portable digital audio player, and started selling it on November 10. The product was phenomenally successful — over 100 million units were sold within six years. In 2003, Apple's iTunes Store was introduced, offering online music downloads for $0.99 a song and integration with the iPod. The service quickly became the market leader in online music services, with over 5 billion downloads by June 19, 2008.
Since 2001, Apple's design team has progressively abandoned the use of translucent colored plastics first used in the iMac G3. This began with the titanium PowerBook and was followed by the white polycarbonate iBook and the flat-panel iMac.2005–07: Transition to Intel Main article: Apple's transition to Intel processors The MacBook Pro, Apple's first laptop with an Intel microprocessor, announced in January 2006.
At the Worldwide Developers Conference keynote address on June 6, 2005, Steve Jobs announced that Apple would begin producing Intel-based Mac computers in 2006. On January 10, 2006, the new MacBook Pro and iMac became the first Apple computers to use Intel's Core Duo CPU. By August 7, 2006 Apple had transitioned the entire Mac product line to Intel chips, over one year sooner than announced. The Power Mac, iBook, and PowerBook brands were retired during the transition; the Mac Pro, MacBook, and MacBook Pro became their respective successors. On April 29, 2009, The Wall Street Journal reported that Apple was building its own team of engineers to design microchips.
Apple introduced Boot Camp to help users install Windows XP or Windows Vista on their Intel Macs alongside Mac OS X.
Apple's success during this period was evident in its stock price. Between early 2003 and 2006, the price of Apple's stock increased more than tenfold, from around $6 per share (split-adjusted) to over $80. In January 2006, Apple's market cap surpassed that of Dell. Nine years prior, Dell's CEO Michael Dell said that if he ran Apple he would "shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders." Although Apple's market share in computers had grown, it remained far behind competitors using Microsoft Windows, with only about 8% of desktops and laptops in the US.2007–11: Widespread success
Apple achieved widespread success with its iPhone, iPod Touch and iPad products, which introduced innovations in mobile phones, portable music players and personal computers respectively. In addition, the implementation of a store for the purchase of software applications represented a new business model. Touch screens had been invented and seen in mobile devices before, but Apple was the first to achieve mass market adoption of such a user interface that included particular pre-programmed touch gestures.
Delivering his keynote speech at the Macworld Expo on January 9, 2007, Jobs announced that Apple Computer, Inc. would from that point on be known as Apple Inc., because computers were no longer the main focus of the company, which had shifted its emphasis to mobile electronic devices. The event also saw the announcement of the iPhone and the Apple TV. The following day, Apple shares hit $97.80, an all-time high at that point. In May, Apple's share price passed the $100 mark.
In an article posted on Apple's website on February 6, 2007, Steve Jobs wrote that Apple would be willing to sell music on the iTunes Store without digital rights management (DRM) (which would allow tracks to be played on third-party players), if record labels would agree to drop the technology. On April 2, 2007, Apple and EMI jointly announced the removal of DRM technology from EMI's catalog in the iTunes Store, effective in May. Other record labels followed later that year.
In July of the following year, Apple launched the App Store to sell third-party applications for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Within a month, the store sold 60 million applications and brought in $1 million daily on average, with Jobs speculating that the App Store could become a billion-dollar business for Apple. Three months later, it was announced that Apple had become the third-largest mobile handset supplier in the world due to the popularity of the iPhone.
On December 16, 2008, Apple announced that after over 20 years of attending Macworld, 2009 would be the last year Apple would be attending the Macworld Expo, and that Phil Schiller would deliver the 2009 keynote in lieu of the expected Jobs. Almost exactly one month later, on January 14, 2009, an internal Apple memo from Jobs announced that he would be taking a six-month leave of absence, until the end of June 2009, to allow him to better focus on his health and to allow the company to better focus on its products without having the rampant media speculating about his health. Despite Jobs' absence, Apple recorded its best non-holiday quarter (Q1 FY 2009) during the recession with a revenue of $8.16 billion and a profit of $1.21 billion.
After years of speculation and multiple rumored "leaks", Apple announced a large screen, tablet-like media device known as the iPad on January 27, 2010. The iPad runs the same touch based operating system that the iPhone uses and many of the same iPhone apps are compatible with the iPad. This gave the iPad a large app catalog on launch even with very little development time before the release. Later that year on April 3, 2010, the iPad was launched in the US and sold more than 300,000 units on that day, reaching 500,000 by the end of the first week. In May of the same year, Apple's market cap exceeded that of competitor Microsoft for the first time since 1989.
Apple released the fourth generation iPhone, which introduced video calling, multitasking, and a new uninsulated stainless steel design, which acts as the phone's antenna. Because of this antenna implementation, some iPhone 4 users reported a reduction in signal strength when the phone is held in specific ways. After a large amount of media coverage including mainstream news organizations, Apple held a press conference where they offered buyers a free rubber 'bumper' case, which had been proven to eliminate the signal reduction issue. Later that year Apple again refreshed its iPod line of MP3 players which introduced a multi-touch iPod Nano, iPod Touch with FaceTime, and iPod Shuffle with buttons which brought back the buttons of earlier generations.
In October 2010, Apple shares hit an all-time high, eclipsing $300. Additionally, on October 20, Apple updated their MacBook Air laptop, iLife suite of applications, and unveiled Mac OS X Lion, the last version with the name Mac OS X. On January 6, 2011, the company opened their Mac App Store, a digital software distribution platform, similar to the existing iOS App Store. Apple was featured in the documentary Something Ventured which premiered in 2011.2011–present: Post–Steve Jobs era Apple store in Yonkers, New York
On January 17, 2011, Jobs announced in an internal Apple memo that he would take another medical leave of absence, for an indefinite period, to allow him to focus on his health. Chief operating officer Tim Cook assumed Jobs' day-to-day operations at Apple, although Jobs would still remain "involved in major strategic decisions for the company." Apple became the most valuable consumer-facing brand in the world. In June 2011, Steve Jobs surprisingly took the stage and unveiled iCloud, an online storage and syncing service for music, photos, files and software which replaced MobileMe, Apple's previous attempt at content syncing.
This would be the last product launch Jobs would attend before his death. It has been argued that Apple has achieved such efficiency in its supply chain that the company operates as a monopsony (one buyer, many sellers), in that it can dictate terms to its suppliers. In July 2011, due to the American debt-ceiling crisis, Apple's financial reserves were briefly larger than those of the US Government.
On August 24, 2011, Jobs resigned his position as CEO of Apple. He was replaced by Tim Cook and Jobs became Apple's chairman. Prior to this, Apple did not have a chairman and instead had two co-lead directors, Andrea Jung and Arthur D. Levinson, who continued with those titles until Levinson became Chairman of the Board in November.
On October 4, 2011, Apple announced the iPhone 4S, which included an improved camera with 1080p video recording, a dual core A5 chip capable of 7 times faster graphics than the A4, an "intelligent software assistant" named Siri, and cloud-sourced data with iCloud. The following day, on October 5, 2011, Apple announced that Jobs had died, marking the end of an era for Apple Inc. The iPhone 4S was officially released on October 14, 2011.
On October 29, 2011, Apple purchased C3 Technologies, a mapping company, for $240 million, becoming the third mapping company Apple has purchased. On January 10, 2012, Apple paid $500 million to acquire Anobit, an Israeli hardware company that developed and supplies a proprietary memory signal processing technology that improves the performance of flash-memory used in iPhones and iPads.
On January 19, 2012, Apple's Phil Schiller introduced iBooks Textbooks for iOS and iBook Author for Mac OS X in New York City. This was the first major announcement by Apple since the passing of Steve Jobs, who stated in his biography that he wanted to reinvent the textbook and education. The 3rd generation iPad was announced on March 7, 2012. It includes a Retina display, a new CPU, a five megapixel camera, and 1080p video recording.
On July 24, 2012, during a conference call with investors, Tim Cook said that he loved India, but that Apple was going to expect larger opportunities outside of India, citing the reason as the 30% sourcing requirement from India.
On August 20, 2012, Apple's rising stock rose the company's value to a world-record $624 billion dollars. This beat the non-inflation-adjusted record for market capitalization set by Microsoft in 1999. On August 24, 2012, a US jury ruled that Samsung should pay Apple $1.05 billion (£665m) in damages in an intellectual property lawsuit. Samsung said they will appeal the court ruling.
On September 12, 2012, Apple unveiled the iPhone 5, featuring an enlarged screen, more powerful processors, and running iOS 6. The latter includes a new mapping application (replacing Google Maps) that has attracted some criticism. It was made available on September 21, 2012, and became Apple's biggest iPhone launch, with over 2 million pre-orders pushing back the delivery date to late October.
On October 23, 2012, Apple unveiled the iPad Mini, which features a 7.9-inch screen in contrast to the iPad's 9.7-inch screen. Apple also released a third-generation 13-inch MacBook Pro with a Retina display; the iPad 4, featuring a faster processor and a Lightning dock connector; and new iMac and Mac Mini computers. After the launch of Apple's iPad mini and fourth generation iPad on November 3, 2012, Apple announced that they had sold 3 million iPads in three days of the launch, but it did not mention the sales figures of specific iPad models.
On November 10, 2012, Apple confirmed a global settlement that would dismiss all lawsuits between Apple and HTC up to that date, in favor of a ten-year license agreement for current and future patents between the two companies. It is predicted that Apple will make $280 million a year from this deal with HTC.
In December 2012, in a TV interview for NBC's Rock Center and also aired on the Today morning show, Apple CEO Tim Cook said that in 2013 the company will produce one of its existing lines of Mac computers in the United States. In January 2013, Cook stated that he expected China to overtake the US as Apple's biggest market.
In March 2013, Apple announced a patent for an augmented reality (AR) system that can identify objects in a live video stream and present information corresponding to these objects through a computer-generated information layer overlaid on top of the real-world image.
At the Worldwide Developer's Conference on June 10, 2013, Apple announced the seventh iOS operating system alongside OS X Mavericks, the tenth version of Mac OS X, and a new Internet radio service called iTunes Radio. iOS 7 and OS X Mavericks are both expected to be released during fall 2013, while the iTunes Radio Service, which will be integrated with Apple's personal voice-assistant software program Siri, is scheduled for release in the second half of 2013. The radio service features more than 200 stations according to company's statement.