Today in Apple history: The first great color PowerBook arrives

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Do you remember the PowerBook 180c?
Photo: Wikipedia CC

x June 7, 1993: Apple debuts the PowerBook 180c laptop, a solid upgrade to the impressive PowerBook 180 that launched the previous October.

The 180c’s big improvement over the grayscale PowerBook 180 is its active-matrix, 256-color screen — offering a world of dazzling colors that is something of a novelty for laptops in the early 1990s.

Today in Apple history: The best Mac portable to date

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Do you remember the PowerBook 540c?
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

May16May 16, 1994: Apple launches the PowerBook 540c, one of the best laptops in its history.

Part of the innovative 500 series of PowerBooks, the 540c is the laptop to own in 1994. Blisteringly fast, packed with innovative features, and offering the best notebook display on the market, it’s a triumph on every level. Although for $5,539 ($9,139 in today’s money), it had better be…

Today in Apple history: 1997’s ‘MacBook Air’ weighed 4.4 pounds

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The PowerBook 2400c was Apple's ultra-thin laptop of its day.
Photo: Apple

May8May 8, 1997: Apple launches the PowerBook 2400c laptop, a 4.4 pound “subnotebook” that’s the MacBook Air of its day.

The PowerBook 2400c both predicts the future rise of speedy, lightweight notebooks, while also paying tribute to Apple’s past with a design that echoes the original PowerBook 100 in appearance. Even years later, it remains a cult favorite among many Mac users.

Today in Apple history: Beginning of the end for Mac OS Copland

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Copland never saw the light of day.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

April 26 April 26, 1996: Apple’s eagerly anticipated, but much delayed, Copland operating system for Mac suffers a fatal blow when the senior VP in charge of the project leaves the company.

David C. Nagel, Apple’s chief technologist, previously promised Mac OS Copland would ship to users by mid-1996 at the latest. With that deadline no longer appearing accurate, he leaves Apple for a job running AT&T Laboratories.

It’s yet another sign that Apple’s top-to-bottom operating system upgrade is in major trouble.

Today in Apple history: Macintosh 512Ke further enhances the Mac

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The 512Ke muddies the Mac waters just a smidge.
Photo: Vectronicsappleworld

April14 April 14, 1986: The “low-cost” Macintosh 512Ke brings hardware upgrades — and a bit of confusion — to the low end of the Mac lineup.

The Mac 512Ke is an “enhanced” (hence the “e”) model of the Mac 512K, which addressed complaints that the original Mac didn’t come with enough memory. The 512Ke adds a double-density 800k floppy drive and a 128k ROM to the Mac 512K formula.

Today in Apple history: Mac OS 7 gets its final update

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This was the beginning of the end for System 7.
Photo: Apple

Apr7 April 7, 1997: Apple’s System 7 operating system receives its last update with the shipping of Mac OS 7.6.1.

The update adds a few bug fixes and support for Apple’s new PCI Power Macs and the PowerBook 3400. Most importantly, it officially brings to an end the System 7 era, which dawned way back in 1991.

Today in Apple history: Mac users can run Windows through Boot Camp

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Boot Camp finally allowed Macs to run Windows with ease.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

April5April 5, 2006: Apple introduces the public beta of Boot Camp, software that allows users with an Intel-based Mac to run Windows XP in addition to macOS — or OS X as it was known at the time.

Boot Camp later officially makes its debut as a feature in Mac OS X “Leopard,” which debuts at Apple’s Worldwide Developer Conference (WWDC) a few month later in August.

Today in Apple history: Apple frenemy Microsoft is born

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Bill Gates before and after that first dollar.
Apple and Microsoft had a long and storied history together.
Photo: Fulvio Obregon

Apr4 April 4, 1975: Childhood friends Bill Gates and Paul Allen found Microsoft Corporation, a software company destined to become a tech behemoth — and a major Apple frenemy.

Microsoft broke through to the mainstream with Excel and Word a few years later, and soon became a key developer for Macintosh software. Then Windows launched, looking suspiciously Apple-like, and Microsoft and Apple embarked upon a long-running feud.

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.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

March27March 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.