30 Years of Macintosh!
January 24th 1984, Steve Jobs took to the Flint Centre (Cupertino, CA) stage to unveil the future of computing. It was the first personal computer to feature a graphical user interface.
Pulled from a zipped up bag came a chunky but small, beige box called simply ‘Apple Macintosh’. It sold for $2,495 and the CPU speed was just 8MHz, with 128K RAM of memory. Soon after its release it was deemed insufficient, little did they know that this was the beginning of a timeline of innovation that would change the world… all with the click of a mouse.
Today, 30 years on, we take a nostalgic look back with Apple to reflect on how the small chunky box came to evolve into a sleek 27” flat screen that holds up to 3TB.
As pioneers, Apple has always been positioned as ahead of the game, innovative beyond your wildest dreams. Early Apple employee Randy Wigginton describes the Macintosh as a “quantum leap forward” in terms of making “everything very accessible and smooth. It was the first computer people would play with and say: That’s cool.”” (Source: Metro Friday January 24th 2014)
Apple itself delivered the Macintosh with a promise. The promise that the ‘power of technology taken from a few and put in the hands of everyone, could change the world.’ So intuitive and easy to use, that anyone could use it. It has become a universal tool for creatives to get ideas out of their heads. A universal tool for making the impossible possible. As Dr. Maki Sugimoto states In Apple’s ‘30 years of innovation’ video, “With its release it inspired people to think what’s possible, and that made people do better work.” Apple has listened and engaged with its audience to really gain perspective of what’s needed and what’s not needed, then create new technology and release it to the world, generating excitement every time.
The years after the release of the original Macintosh saw newer models with higher memory, faster CPU speed and the insertion of the floppy disk drive. Then finally in February 1993 Apple launched the first Macintosh with a colour screen. It was called the Macintosh Color and boasted 512×384-pixel colour, 10” monitor. The next big thing for Apple Computers came in 1998 when they redesigned and renamed the Macintosh to iMac. It used up-to-date technology and had 233 MHz, 32MB of RAM, a 4GB hard drive, a 24x CD-ROM, Ethernet, stereo speakers and a 15” monitor! The brand new look was an egg shape, and half of it was encased in a translucent coloured plastic case and was only available in the colour ‘Bondi Blue’. Following on from this popular release they brought out newer, faster, bigger memory versions in new colours.
January 7th 2002 was the birth of the flat screen iMac. Apple also brought out the new keyboard with white keys and grey letters, a change from the previous hard-to-read black keys with grey letters. In the following years they changed the materials it was made from and the available sizes of screen. With every generation, the Mac reimagines what a computer can be. The newest version of iMac has a LED-backlit display, which provides more accurate colours on the monitor and allows lower power consumption.
As a Digital Account Executive in a creative agency, I’m highly passionate about Macs and all things Apple! The first experience I had of Apple came in the form of my friend’s MacBook in around 2005. She booted it up and I was (and still am) completely in awe with the technology Apple brings.
With the past 30 years of Apple being so exciting, I cannot wait to see what the next 30 years bring!
Happy Birthday, Mac!