- Mac 68k F.A.Q.
The original press release: Introducing
CUPERTINO, Calif., January
Apple Introduces Macintosh Advanced Personal
Apple Computer today unveiled its much-anticipated
Macintosh computer, a sophisticated, affordably
priced personal computer designed for business
people, professionals and students in a broad
range of fields. Macintosh is available in all
dealerships now. Based on the advanced, 32-bit
architecture developed for Apple's Lisa computer,
Macintosh combines extraordinary computing power
with exceptional ease of use--in a unit that
is smaller and lighter than most transportable
computers. The suggested retail price for Macintosh
is $2,495, which during the introductory period
also includes a word-processing program and graphics
Macintosh, along with three powerful new Lisa
2 computers, forms the basis of the Apple 32
SuperMicro family of computers. All systems in
the family run Macintosh software.
Like Apple's ground-breaking Lisa computer,
Macintosh uses its built-in user-interface software
and high-resolution display to simulate the actual
desk-top working environment--complete with built-in
notepads, file folders, a calculator and other
office tools. Every Macintosh computer contains
64 kilobytes of read-only memory (ROM), built-in
Lisa Technology and 128 kilobytes of random-access
memory (RAM) that support these desk-top tools.
Users tell Macintosh what to do simply by moving
a "mouse"--a small pointing device--to
select among functions listed in menus and represented
by pictorial symbols on the screen. Users are
no longer forced to memorize the numerous and
confusing keyboard commands of conventional computers.
The result is radical ease of use and a significant
reduction in learning time. In effect, the Macintosh
is a desk-top appliance offering users increased
utility and creativity with simplicity.
"We believe that Lisa Technology represents
the future direction of all personal computers,"
said Steven P. Jobs, Chairman of the Board of
Apple. "Macintosh makes this technology
available for the first time to a broad audience--at
a price and size unavailable from any other manufacturer.
By virtue of the large amount of software written
for them, the Apple II and the IBM PC became
the personal-computer industry's first two standards.
We expect Macintosh to become the third industry
A wide range of software applications will be
supplied by leading independent software companies.
Currently, more than 100 companies are developing
software and hardware peripheral devices for
Macintosh. The popular Lotus 1-2-3 integrated
business package will be available in a Macintosh
version, and Microsoft's Multiplan financial-planning
application is available immediately.
Two Macintosh application programs--one for
word processing and one for graphics--also are
available from Apple immediately and will be
offered at no charge to anyone purchasing Macintosh
during the first 100 days after introduction.
These software packages will be followed by communications
software, business productivity tools and programming
languages that will allow Macintosh to gain access
to data from large mainframe computers.
Twenty-four of the nation's leading universities,
such as Harvard, Princeton, Stanford and Yale,
have joined forces with Apple to plan and implement
personal-computer applications over the next
few years. (See accompanying Apple University
Consortium press release.) Under terms of the
new Apple University Consortium, each member
expects to purchase more than $2 million of Apple
products (mostly Macintosh computers) over the
next three years for use by faculty and students.
Members of the consortium may share courseware
(educational software) and application developments
with one another in accordance with the agreement.
The prestigious accounting firm of Peat, Marwick
Mitchell and Co. has ordered more than 2,000
Macintosh computers to be delivered in 1984.
Based on these commitments, Apple expects demand
to exceed supply for several months.
Apple is manufacturing the new computers in
a recently opened, highly automated factory in
Fremont, California, which is capable of producing
one system every 27 seconds and therefore meeting
what is expected to be a large demand.
Macintosh Slashes Computer Learning Time
Macintosh is aimed at a broad group of business
people, professionals and college students. These
people perform tasks that are similar in one
important respect: they all involve working at
a desk and transforming information and ideas
into memos, reports, budgets, plans and analyses.
The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates
that while there are 25 million of these "knowledge
workers" in the United States alone, only
5 percent currently use desk-top computers. Apple
market research indicates that the majority are
unable or unwilling to invest the 20 to 40 hours
it takes to master conventional computers and
the additional three to 10 hours' learning time
required for each new application program.
Macintosh, by contrast, typically takes only
a few hours to learn. Its operation mirrors the
activities that are carried on by people at their
desks. Papers can be shuffled on screen, documents
revised or discarded, charts drawn--all with
a few simple commands executed with the mouse.
Several documents can be displayed on screen
simultaneously, in "windows" that can
be moved, expanded or shrunk. All applications,
from financial-planning tools to graphics programs,
are based on the same set of intuitive operations.
This means that numbers, words and pictures can
be easily .. cut"
from memos, charts or graphs and "pasted"
into other documents--even those created in separate
application programs produced by different software
"Macintosh easily fits on a desk, both
in terms of its style of operation and its physical
design," said Jobs. "It takes up about
the same amount of desk space as a piece of paper.
With Macintosh, the computer is an aid to spontaneity
and originality, not an obstacle. It allows ideas
and relationships to be viewed in new ways. Macintosh
enhances not just productivity, but also creativity."
Macintosh Sales Outlook
According to industry analyst Jean Yates, of
Yates Ventures in Palo Alto, California, worldwide
sales of Macintosh could total 350,000 units
this year, with 70 percent of sales going to
businesses, 20 percent to colleges and universities
and 10 percent to home users. Many office users
are expected to carry Macintosh computers home
for work, and this is expected to fuel home sales
as family members and others are exposed to the
Aaron Goldberg, of International Data Corp.,
(IDC), in Santa Clara, California, said, "There's
no doubt Apple has a winner with this product.
The market has been waiting for this combination
of technology, ease of operation and price."
Support from Leading Software Vendors
Apple expects 90 percent of all Macintosh software
to come from independent software vendors. Among
the prominent companies working on Macintosh
applications are Microsoft Corp., Lotus Development,
and Software Publishing Corp. (See list attached
to software-support press release.)
Apple is supporting these efforts by providing
independent software vendors with Macintosh computers
and comprehensive open-architecture programming
documentation, classes and other development
support from Apple representatives. Apple foresees
at least 500 software packages available for
Macintosh by the end of 1984, including productivity
applications, communications packages, educational
tools, specialized applications (such as accounting
packages) and games.
Apple is currently providing two application
programs for the Macintosh: MacWrite and MacPaint.
MacWrite is a versatile word-processing program
that features multiple fonts and font sizes,
search-and-replace functions and the ability
to cut text and pictures from other programs
and paste them into memos or reports. MacPaint
is a powerful illustration graphics program.
Users can choose from an array of tools, such
as brushes, pencils and erasers, and a large
selection of textures and shapes to create an
endless variety of free-form and structured images.
Programs to be released by Apple in 1984 include--for
the first quarter--MacTerminal, which allows
Macintosh to emulate DEC VT 100, VT 52, TTY and,
with AppleLine, IBM 3277 and 3278 terminals for
access to a variety of text) and is protected
by a tough plastic case. Apple's new Lisa 2 series
of computers also use the 3 1/2-inch disk drive,
enabling the Lisas to run Macintosh programs.
Macintosh has two RS 232C/RS 422 serial ports
for attaching a printer and peripheral communications
devices such as a modem; another port for connecting
an optional external disk drive; and an audio
system that has a range of more than 12 octaves,
is capable of producing polyphonic pitches and
can replicate human speech. In addition, Apple
is developing the AppleBus point-to-point interconnect
system for all Apple computers, which will allow
Macintosh computers to communicate with each
other, peripheral devices and other Apple computers
linked together. The hardware interface for AppleBus
is built into every Macintosh and Lisa computer
Peripherals and Accessories
A number of Macintosh accessories and peripheral
devices are available now: The Apple Imagewriter
printer for high-quality text and graphics; an
accountant-style numeric keypad; the Macintosh
carrying case; a disk pack of ten 3 1/2-inch
diskettes; and the Apple telephone modem, with
data transmission rates of 1,200 or 300 baud.
Another peripheral, AppleLine, allows Macintosh
to emulate IBM 3277 and 3278 mainframe computers.
An external disk drive and a security kit, which
locks Macintosh and keyboard to a table or desk
will be available in March 1984.
Sales and Service
Apple estimates that initially 85 percent of
Macintosh sales will be made through retail channels,
with direct sales making up the remainder. The
Macintosh will be sold through Apple's 3,000
authorized dealers worldwide.
To aid in its sales support, Apple has initiated
an "Own-a-Mac" program. This program
offers incentive discounts to sales personnel
to encourage their purchasing a Macintosh computer.
In this way sales staff will fully understand
product features and application programs.
Designed to be marketed internationally, Macintosh
uses no English language in or on the machine.
Icons depict the functions of the keys, controls,
ports and servicing instructions. The Macintosh
ROM contains no English code, making it easy
for a translator to adapt the software for use
in any language. This can be accomplished within
a few hours. once the keyboard has been changed,
any translator can create a "localized"
version of the machine. The translator need not
be familiar with programming. Localized versions
of the Macintosh will be shipped to the United
Kingdom, France, West Germany, Italy and Australia
within three months of introduction, and to other
countries within a year.
Macintosh was designed from the start to be
built in the millions to meet the anticipated
high demand. To that end, Apple is manufacturing
the product in a specially designed $20-million
facility in Fremont, California. This highly
automated factory can produce one system every
27 seconds. Under terms of a "zero-defect" agreement,
Apple's component suppliers will test parts according
to Apple's specifications before delivery to
the Macintosh factory.
Service for Macintosh will be coordinated through
Apple's conventional channels, which include
Apple dealers and the more than 300 RCA service
centers nationwide. Macintosh was designed for
simple servicing: the system is composed of only
four modules, each of which can be easily replaced
in the event of failure.
The basic Macintosh package will have a suggested
retail price of $2,495 and will include the main
unit, keyboard and a mouse. The package also
comes with an accessory box that contains the
system disk; "A Guided Tour of Macintosh,"
a learning disk and cassette tape; a blank disk;
a power cord; an owner's manual; and a programmer's
A host of peripherals and accessories will be
available for the Macintosh computer from Apple
and will have suggested retail prices as follows:
Imagewriter printer $595 ($495 if purchased
Numeric Keypad $129
Modem 300 $225
Modem 1200 $495
Carrying Case $99
3 1/2-inch disk box (10 disks) $49
MacWrite/MacPaint $195 (included free with
each Macintosh during the introductory period)
External Drive $495