September 21, 1999: A little startup called Google comes out of beta, with the launch of a website that will let the general public easily search the internet for information.
September 20, 1989: Apple releases the Macintosh Portable, the first 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.
September 19, 2014: The iPhone undergoes its biggest upgrade — both figuratively and literally — since the original, with the launch of the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus handsets.
The iPhone 6 brings a new 4.7-inch form factor, while the iPhone 6 Plus boasts a massive 5.5-inch design. The previous-generation iPhone 5 measured only slightly taller than its 3.5-inch predecessors. But with the iPhone 6, Apple abandons that strategy for the first time to take on big-screen Android “phablets.”
September 18, 2013: iOS 7 launches with a radical redesign that divides the tech world.
The biggest overhaul Apple’s mobile operating system has seen in years, iOS 7 ditches the skeuomorphic objects, dials and textures of previous iterations. Instead, it boasts stark patches of white space, simpler icons and more abstract controls for settings. The Jony Ive era of software design is truly underway.
September 17, 2012: On the back of record iPhone 5 preorders of 2 million in 24 hours, Apple’s stock price hits a new all-time high. For the first time in history, AAPL breaks the $700 mark in after-hours trading. Passing the milestone cements Cupertino’s place as the world’s most valuable publicly traded company.
Amazingly, the new record is $270 a share higher than at the start of the year. Apple stock rose 65% in just nine months.
September 16, 1985 and 1997: Twice on this day, Steve Jobs makes significant moves with regard to his career at Apple. In 1985, he quits the company he co-founded. Then, a little more than a decade later, he officially rejoins Apple as its new interim CEO.
In terms of the emotions associated with those historic occasions, it’s hard to think of two more polarizing days in Jobs’ life.
September 15, 2014: Responding to its disastrous U2 album giveaway, Apple provides iPhone owners with a tool for wiping all signs of Songs of Innocence from their phones.
It comes after one of the strangest PR debacles in Apple history. After putting a free copy of U2’s latest release on every iPhone owner’s handset as a special promotion, millions find themselves with an album they didn’t order in their iTunes library. Many weren’t happy about it.
September 14, 2010: Security workers reportedly stop Steve Jobs at Japan’s Kansai International Airport. The reason? The Apple CEO supposedly tried to bring ninja throwing stars onto his private plane while heading home from vacation.
It’s one of the most bizarre Jobs stories ever. Apple, however, quickly spoils the internet’s fun. Cupertino issues a statement describing the reports as “pure fiction” (although Apple acknowledges that Jobs visited Japan over the summer).
September 13, 1983: Osborne Computer Corporation, one of Apple’s early rivals, declares bankruptcy.
Many consider the company’s Osborne 1 the world’s first truly portable, full-featured computer. It packed everything users needed to set up shop at home or on the road. Alas, it didn’t last!
September 12, 2012: The Lightning connector replaces Apple’s aging 30-pin interface, a proprietary data and power connector that debuted on the iPod Classic in 2003. The slender and capable new Lightning port debuts in the iPhone 5, bringing big improvements — and no small amount of controversy.
Apple soon will build the Lightning connector into many other products, including iPad, iPod and accessories. It’s used to charge the mobile devices as well as transfer data to a Mac or PC.