January 24, 1984 was the day of the annual Apple’s shareholders meeting in the Flint Center in Cupertino. It was a day that would go down in history, a day that will forever change how people viewed personal computers. You can even read what he said online. It was the day that Steve Jobs finally introduced the revolutionary Macintosh computer.
What Transpired That Day
It was a packed room and Steve Jobs was holding sway over shareholders. He was smartly dressed in a double-breasted suit, and he warned against an IBM-dominated future while he extolled the virtues of the new Mac. It was “insanely great”, he insisted. It can even talk with its text to speech feature:
“Hello, I’m Macintosh. It sure is great to get out of that bag. Unaccustomed as I am to public speaking, I’d like to share with you a maxim I thought of the first time I met an IBM mainframe. Never trust a computer you can’t lift.”
The shareholders approved of his vision.
The Mac Breakthroughs
Technically speaking, the Macintosh didn’t really start any new single piece of technology. Perhaps its most prominent feature was the mouse, but that was invented way back in 1968. Even Windows launched a mouse the year before. And the famous Mac “WIMP” interface that consisted of windows, icons, menus, and a pointer controlled by the user wasn’t all that new either.
Still, 3 crucial innovations were very obvious:
Although the Mac was clearly superior to the PC of the time, it was also more expensive. It was to retail for about $2,500 and in 1984 that was a LOT of money (still is!). PC users also had more options among specialized applications, and they really had a wider support system.
As a result, PCs still dominated sales in the desktop computer industry every year since 1984. Steve Jobs himself would be forced out of Apple in 1985, just a little more than a year after the Macintosh introduction.