Today in Apple history: Apple signs damaging deal with Microsoft

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Windows used a number of elements of the Mac UI
One of the most damaging deals in Apple history.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

November 21: Today in Apple history: Apple signs Microsoft deal November 21, 1985: Following Steve Jobs’ departure, Apple comes close to signing its own death warrant by licensing the Macintosh’s look and feel to Microsoft.

The deal, between Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Apple CEO John Sculley, comes hot on the heels of the Windows operating system’s release. The pact gives Microsoft a “non-exclusive, worldwide, royalty-free, perpetual, nontransferable license to use [parts of the Mac technology] in present and future software programs, and to license them to and through third parties for use in their software programs.”

Oh, boy!

Today in Apple history: Rainbow Apple logo gets a modern overhaul

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Apple logo
Apple's retro rainbow logo gave way to a new, sleeker design.
Photo: Lyle Kahney/Cult of Mac

August 27: Today in Apple history August 27, 1999: Apple replaces the striped, multicolored logo it used since 1977 with a new single-color version.

The replacement of the iconic logo shocks many long-time Apple fans. However, it is part of a sustained, company-wide overhaul on the part of Steve Jobs. The makeover includes new products, the “Think Different” ad campaign, and eventually the removal of the word “Computer” from the company’s name.

The next Apple Watch could empty my pockets — in a good way

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Hopefully I won't have to carry this stuff around with me thanks to Apple Watch Series 3
Hopefully I won't need to carry this stuff around after Apple Watch Series 3 arrives.
Photo: Graham Bower/Cult of Mac

The latest rumors about the next-generation Apple Watch indicate it might come with LTE cellular data in a slick new design. But Apple Watch already offers data connectivity via iPhone, and Cupertino’s marketing tends to focus on benefits, not features. So how will Apple craft a new product story around built-in cellular?

My guess is it will all be about replacing the need for a very old technology: pockets. Apple Watch Series 3 will move all the contents of our pockets into the cloud.

Today in Apple history: iMac G4 gets super-size screen

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The iMac G4 brings a
The iMac G4 brings a "breathtaking" giant screen to desktops everywhere.
Photo: Apple

July 17 Today in Apple history July 17, 2002: Apple ships a new super-sized iMac G4, offering a 17-inch widescreen LCD display that becomes the envy of most computer users at the time.

“The best consumer desktop just got even better,” says Steve Jobs of Apple’s new all-in-one computer. “Having this gorgeous 17-inch flat screen floating in mid-air right in front of you is simply breathtaking. There’s nothing like it in the PC world.” He wasn’t wrong!

Today in Apple history: iPhone 3G brings a big speed boost

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iPhone 3G
Did you own the iPhone 3G?
Photo: Apple

July 11July 11, 2008: The iPhone 3G goes on sale. Expectations for the smartphone sequel run high, and Apple delivers with a the addition of GPS, 3G data and a higher-quality build.

To make things even better, Apple’s second smartphone runs on a new mobile operating system. iPhone OS 2 introduces a better Mail app, turn-by-turn navigation and a little something called the App Store.

How Apple Park is like Steve Jobs’ ill-fated NeXT Computer

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Apple Park
Both examples of hubris on their creator's part?
Photo: Igor America

Apple Park is a physical manifestation of Steve Jobs’ undying hubris, a monument to fussy perfectionism that’s as crazy as his NeXT Computer, the not-entirely-successful computer he launched after being booted from Apple in 1985.

That’s the premise of a new Bloomberg op-ed, which draws parallels between the new Apple campus and one of Jobs’ most notorious tech launches. It’s interesting, but ultimately wrong. Here’s why.

Cult of Mac Magazine: iPhone turns 10: Inside stories from a decade of Apple innovation

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Cult of Mac Magazine: iPhone Turns 10
Get behind-the-scenes stories from the quest to create a world-changing gadget.
Image: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

It’s hard to put into words the iPhone’s massive impact on society over the past decade. But we tried! In this week’s Cult of Mac Magazine, we’ve rounded up our best coverage (including stories from our collaboration with Wired UK) of the iPhone’s 10th anniversary.

We’ve got insider stories about the development of breakthrough iPhone features, ultra-rare iPhone prototypes and much more for your reading pleasure. Get your free subscription to Cult of Mac Magazine from iTunes. Or read on for this week’s top stories.

Camaraderie, chaos and the original iPhone launch stories you’ve never heard, on The CultCast

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Introducing, iPhone
Though Steve played it cool, the iPhone's launch was plagued with huge problems.

This week on The CultCast: You’d never know it from Steve Jobs’ effortless keynote introduction, but the original iPhone was plagued with huge design and production issues that almost made Apple call it quits — right up until the day it was released! To commemorate the iPhone’s 10th anniversary, we’ll recount some of the incredible stories behind iPhone’s beleaguered early days, and celebrate how Apple pulled off one of the greatest device launches in history.

Our thanks to Shutterstock for supporting this episode. Kickstart your next interactive project with video clips or music tracks from their collection, and save 20 percent for a limited time at shutterstock.com/cultcast.

Is Apple Pencil a harbinger of the designapocalypse? [Friday Night Fights]

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Apple Pencil FNF
Is Apple's design team losing its way?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Apple is famous for its iconic designs, but is the company slowly losing its way?

Friday Night Fights bug Products like the Apple Pencil and Smart Battery Case suggest that Apple’s design team might be missing a certain spark. Even the iPhone, once the prettiest smartphone by a long shot, is now being outshone by rivals from the likes of Samsung and LG.

Join us in this week’s Friday Night Fight as we battle it out over whether Apple design has become lazy and boring. And be sure to have your say!