Today in Apple history: Mac OS 8 becomes an instant smash hit

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Mac OS 8 gave Apple a much-needed revenue boost.
Mac OS 8 gave Apple a much-needed revenue boost.
Illustration: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

July 22: Today in Apple history: Mac OS 8 becomes an instant smash hit July 22, 1997: Apple introduces its next-gen operating system, Mac OS 8, the first major OS refresh for Macintosh since System 7’s release in 1991.

Mac OS 8 introduces easier surfing of the internet, a new three-dimensional look and other features. It gets great reviews — but arrives at a very challenging time for Apple.

Today in Apple history: Radius kicks off clone Mac era in style

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Radius was the first company to launch an official Macintosh clone, the Radius System 100.
Radius was the first company to launch an official Macintosh clone.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

March 27: Today in Apple history: Radius kicks off clone Mac era in style with System 100 computer March 27, 1995: The first official Macintosh clone launches, as Radius releases its high-end System 100 Mac.

Made by a company founded by several notable Macintosh alumni, this marvelous machine kicks off the era of clone Macs in grand fashion — before things take a turn for the worse.

Today in Apple history: The first portable Macintosh arrives

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The Macintosh Portable presaged Apple's move into mobile
The Macintosh Portable offered a (really heavy) glimpse of the future.
Photo: Macworld

September 20: Today in Apple history: Macintosh Portable, the first battery-powered Mac, arrives September 20, 1989: Apple releases the Macintosh Portable, its pre-PowerBook attempt at introducing the world to a battery-powered Mac you could take on the road.

At a time when Tim Burton’s Batman is flying high in theaters, and Madonna is shocking audiences at the MTV Video Music Awards, this ahead-of-its-time product lays the groundwork for Apple’s looming laptop revolution.

Today in Apple history: Mac marketing guru Joanna Hoffman is born

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Kate Winslet (left) plays Joanna Hoffman (right) in Steve Jobs.
Kate Winslet (left) played Mac marketing guru Joanna Hoffman in Danny Boyle's Steve Jobs biopic.
Photos: Kate Winslet/Apple

July 27: Today in Apple history: Mac marketing guru Joanna Hoffman birthday July 27, 1955: Joanna Hoffman, who will join the original Macintosh and NeXT teams and become Steve Jobs’ first right-hand woman, is born in Poland.

Six months younger than Jobs, the marketing executive is one of the few people willing and able to stand up to the oftentimes-fierce Apple co-founder during the first part of his career.

Today in Apple history: Powerful, upgradeable Macintosh IIx arrives

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The Mac IIx in all its glory
Photo: Laptopanda

Mon19 September 19, 1988: Apple debuts the Macintosh IIx, an incremental upgrade of its fantastic Macintosh II.

The updated model is the first Mac to come with Apple’s new, improved 1.44MB floppy disk SuperDrive. It also packs a hefty price tag of between $7,769 and $9,300 — the equivalent of $15,817 to $18,934 today.

So don’t even try complaining about the cost of an iMac, circa 2016!

Today in Apple history: First affordable PowerBook goes on sale

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Powerbook_150
Do you remember this Apple laptop?
Photo: Dana Sibera/Wikipedia CC

July 18July 18, 1994: Apple ships its PowerBook 150 laptop, the company’s first truly affordable PowerBook — and the last to feature the original case design, which included a built-in trackball mouse.

While it’s a normal sight to see students using Apple laptops today, there was a time when Mac notebooks were out of the reach of your average learner. That all changed in the 1990s — and the PowerBook 150 played an important role.

Today in Apple history: Mac LC 520 makes a splash in education market

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LC 520
Was this really almost a quarter of a century ago?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

Tuesday 28 Arriving on this day in 1993, the Macintosh LC 520 was among the first of Apple’s LC 500 series of medium-price Macs.

Selling for $2,000, it was particularly popular in educational institutions, a market Apple continues to pursue today. If you went to school in the decade of Nirvana, Bill Clinton and Pulp Fiction, this could well have been the Mac you used!