Apple Inc needs no introduction. It’s revered and admired (even by its competitors) as one of the most revolutionary and innovative corporations, ever.
Here, in this post, we give you the complete apple story. Right from the early stages, when the company was run out of a garage, to its position today as a market leader – we give you all that you need to know. Apart from answering the basics like When did Apple company start?, Who started Apple, we also give you interesting, and not well-known tidbits and facts about the company and its legendary founders.
So, sit back and let’s take a stroll down memory lane.
It All Started Here
The history of Apple is nothing short of a fairytale. Apple, the tech behemoth had humble beginnings. The company was initially started in a garage and by three friends who had big dreams.
The Apple Company history starts from the friendship of two Steves – the world famous Steve Jobs and his buddy, Steve Wozniak. Answering the question, Who is the founder of the Apple company? Very often people forget that there was a third person involved, apart from the two Steves mentioned above.
Jobs brought Wayne into the company to provide business advice to him and Wozniak. But, Wayne backed out of the venture, even before Apple could officially be incorporated. He took an $800 check for his shares and quit. Today, four decades later, his shares would have been worth $72 billion. Talk of missed opportunities.
Jobs and Wozniak were real close. Their ardent passion for technology, and the ability to think ahead, and their mutual love for pranks made them lifelong friends.
The two friends were constantly using their technical know-how to impress and have fun. Here are some of their notorious pranks from their youth. The duo rigged up a painting of a hand, which displayed the middle finger right during a solemn graduation ceremony at Jobs’ school. Another prank involved them nearly getting access to the Pope at the Vatican, via a long-distance call.
Jobs and Wozniak were also working on building “blue boxes,” a technology that made long-distance calls for free.
The Beginning of Apple – The First Apple Computer
Both Jobs and Woz belonged to the Homebrew Computer Club, a computer hobbyist group. It was here that Woz came across the MITS’ Altair, from which he drew inspiration. While Woz was impressed by the DIY approach of the Altair, he wanted something simpler and easy to use. This philosophy is reflected in Apple’s products even today.
Woz built the first modern-day computer that had a typewriter-like keyboard, and for the output, it was connected to a regular TV screen. This invention later came to be known as the Apple I, the template for all modern day computers.
Woz in an interview he gave to the NPR in 2006 stated that while working on the Apple I, he wasn’t concerned about building the prototype for all modern-day computers. Instead, he wanted to impress his peers by creating an inexpensive computer.
When was Apple Founded? The Official Start Date
When Jobs saw Woz’s invention, he recognized its brilliance and its immense potential. He then sold his VW microbus, and Woz parted with his HP calculator (calculators cost a pretty penny, back in those days) and they together along with Wayne officially started Apple Computer Inc on 1st April 1976. The rest, as they say, is history.
The Early Years
Jobs and Wozniak, along with Mike Markkula (who was one of the earliest employees of Apple Inc) designed and sold a series of computers in the late 1970s. This was the first line of commercially successful personal computers and was named as Apple II.
Following the success of Apple II, Apple Inc released the Apple Lisa in the year 1983. The Lisa was the first computer that came with a mouse. The mouse was used to perform commands on a GUI (Graphical User Interface).
Following the Lisa, the Apple Macintosh was released in 1984. The launch of Apple Mac was announced with an ad that is still considered today as one of the greatest ads of all time.
From here, the Apple legend began to grow exponentially.
The Fall and Rise of the Apple Legend – Steve Jobs
In the year 1985, Steve Jobs had a huge blowout with the board of Apple Inc. As a result, Jobs had to leave the company he helped to create. At that time, people considered this as a Steve Jobs failure. But, then he would prove them all wrong.
If you are to learn only one thing from the life of Steve Jobs, then remember this – there’s nothing such as the failure story. Failures are nothing but temporary obstacles for you to overcome before you can reach the peaks of success.
Jobs went on to found a tech company, NeXT that focused on higher education and business. Later in 1986, Jobs began to develop a major interest in a small division of the popular Lucasfilm Ltd. Jobs acquired the company that was involved in the development of Computer Generated Graphics for films.
This was indeed a genius stroke of Jobs. The company later came to be known as Pixar, acknowledged worldwide as the greatest movie-making studios of all time. After several projects, plenty of trial and error, Pixar studios released Toy Story in 1995, with Jobs as the creative producer of the animated film.
The rest is history, and Jobs bounced back into the limelight.
In 1996, Apple Inc bought NeXT and asked Jobs to come back to Apple in a leadership role. Jobs was appointed as the interim CEO of Apple Inc from 1997 to 2000. Later he became the permanent CEO of the firm, till he resigned in 2011.
World Domination both by Apple and Jobs
At the time, when Jobs came back to Apple in 1996, Microsoft was the leader in the market for personal computers, and Apple was considered a niche platform. The higher priced Apple PCs were used only by people in the creative industries like motion pictures, design, and advertising.
Jobs changed all that with the introduction of the Apple iPod in 2001. Suddenly, the whole world began looking up at Apple with reverence and admiration. Jobs completely transformed the way music was listened and shared.
Soon, Apple products were the most sought-after in the market. Everyone couldn’t wait to own an Apple product. It became a status symbol.
The iPhone was released in 2007, and Apple sealed its position as the world dominator in technology. It was a major victory for Jobs, and he was crowned the undisputed genius of the “tech world.”
In 2010, Apple released the first-ever iPad. While it received lukewarm reception initially, Jobs went ahead and focused on it. By the year 2011, more than 15 million iPads were sold all over the world.
The Twist in the Tale – Jobs Fights with Cancer
There were plenty of rumors since 2006 about the health of Jobs. His frail appearance, lackluster speeches were highly criticized. In reality, Jobs announced his deteriorating health condition to his team in mid-2004. He was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer.
Between the years, 2003 and his death in August 2011, Jobs underwent several therapies and surgeries to beat cancer. But, the procedures were futile, as his cancer had reached advanced stages. He stepped down from his post as the CEO of Apple Inc on 24th August 2011. Jobs succumbed to cancer just a few weeks later and passed away on 11th September 2011.
The world lost a genius.
Apple After Jobs
To say, Apple Inc misses its charismatic and genius founder would be the understatement of the century. Yes, Jobs had a negative side – huge ego, no feelings for people, not worried about costs, and a major perfectionist. But, that doesn’t detract him in any way. There’s no denying the fact that Jobs was an incredible visionary, and a brilliant marketer, who charted entire pages in history by himself.
New products from Apple have met with mediocre reception. And, everything from the house of Apple after Jobs still relies on the vision of Jobs to succeed.
The Future of Apple
To put it frankly, it’s a mixed bag. Yes, even today Apple iPhones are sold at premium prices, and there are plenty of takers for it. Yet, Apple seems to have lost its charm a little bit. Will Apple beat its own record by introducing a revolutionary product like the Apple Mac, iPod, iPhone or iPad?
Only time will tell!
Before, we wrap up this post, here are some interesting facts about Apple Inc that will surprise you.
10 Astonishing Facts about Apple
If you Google, Apple Company facts, you can find pages and pages of information repeating the same things. Here, we want to give you some relatively unknown facts about Apple and its genius founder, so that you can appreciate the company a bit more.
- There has been much debate about the name of the company. But, the real reason is quite simple. Jobs like the fruit, “apple” and named his company after it.
- If you smoke while using an Apple Mac, then it voids the warranty agreement. It may sound ridiculous, but that’s the truth.
- Just like Pixar is renowned for its “Easter eggs” in movies, Apple had a hidden Easter egg in the first version of the iPod. To activate the Easter egg, users had to go to the about menu and hold the home button for a few seconds. Doing so, activated a game called “Breakout.” This game was initially created by Jobs and Wozniak, during their time at Atari.
- The Apple I was sold for a price of $666. No, neither Jobs nor Wozniak belonged to any evil satanic cult. Rather, Woz saw that the price was $667 and since he likes repeating numbers changed the retail price to $666.
- Apple creates fake projects for its senior employees to work on. If any information about the project leaks, then Apple can easily find the source and get to fire the employee immediately.
- Apple has held a spot in the Fortune 500 every year since it first gained entry in 1983.
- The original Apple logo was designed by Ronald Wayne, the third co-founder who quit before Apple came into existence.
- A select team of 1000 members worked on a super secret project called as Project Purple which later was released as the first iPhone.
- Jobs lost the Times Magazine Man of the Year in 1982 to an unlikely contender – the Personal Computer.
- Jobs apparently had a wardrobe over 100 similar, black, long-sleeved turtlenecks, his signature uniform.
Wrapping it Up
As we conclude this piece on the incredible Steve Jobs story and his legendary company, we would like to share one of our most favorite Steve Jobs quotes of Steve Jobs quotes work is going to fill a large part of your life. And, the only way you get to be truly satisfied is by doing what you believe is great work.”
So, follow your passions and believe in what you do, the rest will fall in place.