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1998

posted Mar 27, 2014, 6:29 AM by Dushyanthan Devadoss
In San Francisco, Steve Jobs gave an update on the PowerPC G3 chip that was announced on November 10, 1997. Apple built three systems around this chip: G3 Desktop, G3 MiniTower, and G3 PowerBook. The G3 Desktop sold for $1,999. The G3 MiniTower sold for $2,449. Apple had forecasted that they would sell 80,000 of the combined G3 computers. They actually shipped 133,000 computers in 51 days. If annualized, that would be 1,000,000 computers a year. Apple partnered with CompUSA to put an Apple store within their store. They had built 57 stores at that time and the rest were to be built by February 1998. In October 1997, before the stores went live, Macintosh CPU sales were 3% of CompUSA's CPU sales. In December 1997, Macintosh CPU sales were 14%. The Apple Store (online) debuted on November 10, 1997. The online store had set a new standard for online commerce. Build to Order gave customers choice, simplified the inventory, and gave instant availability of components and configurations. Steve announced the "Pro" Add-Ins. Steve announced Mac OS 8.1. New features in Mac OS 8.1 were: Performance and reliability, HFS Plus file system, DVD Universal Disk Format, New Java (programming language) runtime, and Internet Explorer for Mac default browser. Mac OS 8.1 was free for Mac OS 8 owners and was available in February 1998. Steve formally announced QuickTime 3.0. 

In May, Jobs introduced the iMac and the PowerBook G3.

The New York event inaugurated a competition (produced by Double Exposure) called the National Macintosh Gaming Championship, which challenged attendees to play games for a number of premium prize packages. Steve Jobs laid out his "Apple Hierarchy of Skepticism". The first level was Survival. They brought in a new management team, a new Board of Directors, and made a deal with Microsoft. The second level was a Stable Business. Steve covered the opening of the CompUSA stores and online store. The third level was Product Strategy. Steve covered the four product lines Apple would concentrate on. The first being the Power Macintosh G3. Apple had sold over 750,000 G3's to date. The next Pro product was the PowerBook G3. They had a 14.1" screen available. Steve announced they were bringing DVD Video to the PowerBook G3. The iMac would become the Consumer desktop product. The iMac had a G3/233 Processor with a 0.5MB backside cache, 15" Display (1024x768), 32 MB Memory, 4 GB Disk, 24x CD-ROM, 100 mb Ethernet, 12 Mb USB (2), and 33.6 Kb Modem. Steve announced they were upgrading the modem to a 56 Kb Modem. The iMac also included: 4 Mb IrDA, Stereo SRS Sound, and a keyboard and mouse. The iMac sold for $1,299. Steve announced the launch date was August 15, 1998 in the US. Steve spoke about the USB port. It was 30x faster than the old Apple serial ports. Up to 127 devices could be plugged into the USB port. It was Hot Plug-able. It had dynamic drivers. It was an emerging industry standard. Steve reviewed Apple's software strategy. It started with Mac OS 8 and Mac OS X. The modern features of Mac OS X were: Protected Memory, Virtual Memory, Preemptive Multitasking, Fast Networking, Fast File I/O, Fully PPC Native, and Runs OS 8 Apps. Mac OS 8.1 shipped in First Quarter 1998. Mac OS 8.5 would ship late Third Quarter 1998. Mac OS 8.6 was to be shipped in First Quarter 1999. Mac OS 8 Codename Sonata was to ship in Third Quarter 1999. Mac OS X Draft Spec was released during the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in May 1998. Rhapsody (operating system) was being renamed Mac OS X Server and would be released late Third Quarter 1998. A Beta of Mac OS X would be shipped in First Quarter 1999. Mac OS X v10.0 would be shipped in Third Quarter 1999. Steve introduced Phil Schiller to show some of the features of Mac OS 8.5. Phil demoed the new search engine, Sherlock (software). Phil demoed a Network Copy Performance Test on a Power Macintosh G3 using Mac OS 8.5. The fourth level was Applications. Steve introduced Ben Waldman, General Manager of the Macintosh Business Unit at Microsoft. Ben announced that new iMacs would ship with Internet Explorer for Mac 4.01. Ben demoed Internet Explorer. iMac had been announced on May 6, 1998. Since that date, 177 apps had been announced for the Mac. Steve introduced Richard Wolpert, President of Disney Online. Richard demoed Disney Blast Online. The last level was Growth. By adding the Consumer market to the Design/Publishing markets and Education market, Apple's growth would become even stronger. Apple's unique assets were: The Brand, Installed Base, Design/Fashion, and Simplicity. Steve ran the "Simplicity Shootout" video. 

The event continued in 1999 in San Francisco, and was terminated after the New York show in 2000 to make way for the Apple Gaming Pavilion.
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