Today in Apple history: iPhone 4 preorders set an impressive record

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Steve obs
The iPhone 4 wound up selling 1.7 million units in its first weekend.
Photo: Matthew Yohe/Wikipedia CC

June 16: Today in Apple history: Apple receives record preorders for iPhone 4 June 16, 2010: Apple reports a massive surge of interest in its upcoming iPhone 4, with 600,000 sales on the first day of preorders.

The company calls the number “far higher” than expected. At the time, it’s the largest number of iPhone preorders Apple has ever taken in a single day. AT&T suffers server problems thanks to the demand — with 10 times the usual traffic on its website. It’s proof positive that Apple is onto a winner!

How Apple tricks our brains into accepting high prices

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This genius psychological tactic makes Apple's high prices seem totally reasonable.
This genius psychological tactic makes Apple's high prices seem totally reasonable.
Photo: meo/Pexels CC

During the WWDC 2019 keynote, most of Apple’s latest creations drew enthusiastic applause, with one notable exception. The price of Apple’s new Pro Display XDR elicited a somewhat cooler response. But considering just how expensive the monitor is, the fact that it got any applause at all was pretty remarkable.

This is not the first time Apple has had to convince us to pony up for an eye-watering sticker price. Cupertino pulls from a well-established playbook for its keynotes, often employing behavioral science techniques to help soften the blow. (To our brains at least, if not to our wallets).

Lisa Brennan-Jobs’ memoir is out in paperback

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Small Fry
Lisa had a challenging relationship with her famous father, Steve.
Photo: Grove Press

Small Fry, the memoir written by Steve Jobs’ oldest daughter Lisa Brennan-Jobs, is out in paperback this week. It launched in hardcover in September 2018.

The book describes the difficult relationship Lisa had with her father, who famously denied his daughter’s paternity. The pair eventually forged a relationship, although it was often a challenging one.

Today in Apple history: Safari lands on Windows with a ‘meh’

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Safari on Windows
Safari on Windows wasn't quite the smash hit Apple hoped for.
Photo: Apple

June 11: Today in Apple history: Safari lands on Windows with a meh June 11, 2007: At WWDC, Steve Jobs unveils Safari 3 for Windows, bringing its web browser to non-Apple computers for the first time.

Apple advertises Safari as the world’s fastest and easiest-to-use web browser, capable of rendering web pages up to twice as fast as Internet Explorer and 1.6 times faster than Firefox. It lasts until 2012, but never becomes a major player on Windows.

Today in Apple history: Brilliant ad campaign turns switcher into unlikely star

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Apple's
Apple's "Switch" ad makes Ellen Feiss internet famous.
Photo: Apple

June 9: Today in Apple history: Ellen Feiss becomes an unlikely star thanks to Apple's Switch ad campaign June 9, 2002: Apple launches its “Switch” advertising campaign, featuring real people talking about their reasons for switching from PCs to Macs. Apple’s biggest marketing effort since the “Think Different” ad campaign a few years earlier, it turns 15-year-old high school student Ellen Feiss into an unlikely star.

She becomes a viral sensation after viewers suggest she was stoned during filming of her sleepy-eyed “Switch” spot about a homework-devouring PC.

Today in Apple history: Mac clone-maker peaks before a dizzying decline

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Power Computing clone Macs sounded like a good idea at first.
Power Computing's clone Macs were built for speed.
Photo: Antnik

June 4: Today in Apple history: Mac clone-maker Power Computing peaks, begins rapid decline June 4, 1997: Mac clone-maker Power Computing hits its high point — but it’s also the beginning of the end.

Power Computing’s boss reaches an agreement with Apple CEO Gil Amelio concerning the forthcoming Mac OS 8. The deal allows the company to start making moves toward an IPO as the fastest-growing PC company of the decade. Things don’t turn out quite so well!

Steve Jobs didn’t want the ‘Get a Mac’ ads to be too funny

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Justin Long
Apple's "Get a Mac" campaign got laughs at Microsoft's expense from 2006 to 2009.
Photo: Apple

Justin Long, the “Mac” to John Hodgman’s “PC” in the now-famous ads from Apple, said the funnier commercials were kept off the air by company founder Steve Jobs.

It’s not because Jobs lacked a sense of humor as Long revealed over the weekend to host Lola Ogunnaike on PeopleTV’s Couch Surfing.

Today in Apple history: First-gen iPad rolls out around the world

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iPad
Were you a first-gen iPad customer?
Photo: Apple

May 28: Today in Apple history May 28, 2010: Customers across Europe and Asia queue up to buy the iPad when Apple’s new tablet finally rolls out internationally.

The reason for the gap between the iPad’s U.S. launch in early April and its international debut more than a month later? Unexpectedly large demand for the groundbreaking device.

Today in Apple history: Steve Jobs says Apple is being run by ‘caretakers’

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1984
Steve Jobs thought ditching ad agency Chiat/Day proved that Apple had lost its creative mojo.
Photo: Apple and Chiat/Day

May 27: Today in Apple history: Steve Jobs says Apple is being run by caretakers May 27, 1986: An exiled Steve Jobs takes a shot at Apple after the company ditches Chiat/Day, the ad agency that created the iconic “1984” Macintosh ad.

In a full-page ad published in The Wall Street Journal, Jobs says the move to competing ad agency BBDO shows that “caretakers” rather than “builders” now run Apple. From his perspective, it confirms that Apple has lost its revolutionary spirit.

Today in Apple history: Apple becomes world’s most valuable tech company

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money
It was a big day for Apple!
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac/401Calculator

May 26: Today in Apple history: Apple worth more than Microsoft for first time May 26, 2010: In a massive milestone, Apple passes Microsoft to become the world’s most valuable technology company.

The changing of the guard proves particularly amazing given that, just 15 years earlier, Apple looked close to dead, while Microsoft dominated the tech world thanks to Windows.