Today in Apple history: Newton MessagePad inspires mobile revolution

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The Newton MessagePad looks gigantic next to an iPhone.
The Newton MessagePad looks gigantic next to an iPhone.
Photo: Blake Patterson/Wikipedia CC

August 2: Today in Apple history: Newton MessagePad launch inspires mobile revolution August 2, 1993: Apple debuts the MessagePad, the first product in its Newton line of handheld personal digital assistants.

The most unfairly maligned product in Apple history, the Newton is a revolutionary device. It predates Apple’s push toward app-based mobile devices 14 years later. Often dismissed as a failure, the Newton ranks near the top of the list of Apple’s most influential creations.

Today in Apple history: Macintosh SE gets supersized storage

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The Mac SE FDHD was a mouthful to say -- but what a computer!
The Mac SE FDHD was a mouthful to say -- but what a computer!
Photo: Vetronic's Apple World

August 1: Today in Apple history: Macintosh SE gets supersized storage August 1, 1989: Apple gives the Macintosh SE a storage bump, courtesy of the new SuperDrive. Capable of handling high-density floppy discs, the drive offers an astonishing 1.4MB of storage.

In terms of portable storage, it’s a big step up for most Mac owners. The HD floppy disks compare very favorably to the 400KB Single Side Double Density (SSDD) disks and 800KB Double Side Double Density (DDSD) disks in use at the time.

Today in Apple history: World’s first iPad newspaper starts to crumble

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The Daily iPad newspaper was a great, but ultimately failed, experiment.
The Daily was a great, but ultimately failed, experiment.
Photo: The Daily

July 31: Today in Apple history: The Daily, the world's first iPad newspaper, starts to crumble July 31, 2012: The Daily, the world’s first iPad-only newspaper, lays off almost a third of its staff, signaling the demise of a bold publishing experiment.

The deep cuts — The Daily fired 50 of its 170 employees — affect mainly sports and editorial page staffers, although some production and design employees get the ax, too. The ominous move comes as News Corp places the iPad app “on watch” due to disappointing readership numbers.

Today in Apple history: Mac Centris 660av is an audio-visual masterpiece

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The Macintosh Centris 660av was astonishingly ahead of most rival computers at the time.
The Macintosh Centris 660av was astonishingly ahead of most rival computers at the time.
Image: Apple

July 29: Today in Apple history: Mac Centris 660av is an audio-visual masterpiece July 29, 1993: Apple releases the Macintosh Centris 660av, a computer packed with innovative audio-visual features. These include an AppleVision monitor with microphone and speakers, and a port that can works as a modem with a telecom adapter. It also comes with the first Apple software to recognize and synthesize speech.

At the relatively low price of $2,489, this was one of the first great affordable multimedia Macs.

Today in Apple history: Apple acquires the company behind Touch ID

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Touch ID
Touch ID was a massive step forward for Apple.
Photo: Apple

July 28: Today in Apple history: Apple acquires AuthenTec, the company behind Touch ID July 28, 2012: Apple buys biometrics company AuthenTec, acquiring the technology that will power future authentication and secure payments initiatives.

With a price tag of $356 million, the deal gives Apple the right to use AuthenTec hardware, software and patents. In the short term, Apple engineers start working to build Touch ID sensors into the iPhone 5s. Longer-term, AuthenTec’s mobile wallet tech paves the way for Apple Pay.

Today in Apple history: The last iBook laptop goes on sale

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Rugged and pearly white, the iBook G4 becomes the last of its line.
Rugged and pearly white, the iBook G4 becomes the last of its line.
Photo: Hannes Grobe/Wikipedia CC

July 26: Today in Apple history: White iBook G4, the last laptop in the popular lineup, goes on sale July 26, 2005: Apple debuts the opaque white iBook G4, the last of its laptops to launch under the iBook name.

The portable computer adds Apple’s scrolling trackpad for the first time. It also incorporates Bluetooth 2.0 as a standard feature, and becomes the last Apple laptop with a PowerPC chip.

Today in Apple history: Windows scores big victory over Mac

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Windows used a number of elements of the Mac UI
Windows used a number of elements of the Mac UI.
Photo: Ste Smith/Cult of Mac

July 25: Today in Apple history: Windows scores big legal victory over Mac when judge throws out Apple's copyright infringement claims July 25, 1989: Apple suffers a major setback in its copyright-infringement lawsuit against Microsoft for allegedly stealing the Mac’s “look and feel” to create Windows.

Apple sued Microsoft on 189 counts of copyright infringement relating to Windows 2.0.3. The judge overseeing the case throws out 179 of them. This paves the way for Microsoft’s dominance over Apple in the coming decade.

Today in Apple history: Mighty Mouse goes wireless — with lasers!

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Mighty Mouse
The images Apple submitted to the FCC of its new mouse.
Photo: Federal Communications Commission/Apple

July 24: Today in Apple history: Apple Mighty Mouse goes wireless -- with lasers! July 24, 2006: The world gets it first glimpse of Apple’s new wireless Mighty Mouse, a multibutton Bluetooth device with super-accurate laser tracking.

Photos of the accessory come to light through an Apple filing with the Federal Communications Commission. Apple launches the device the very next day.