Thursday April 1, 2021’s Smile of the Day: The Apple Computer Company
On this Day:
In 1976, Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs founded Apple Computer in the garage of Jobs’ parents house in Cupertino, California.
Apple Inc. is an American multinational technology company headquartered in Cupertino, California, that designs, develops, and sells consumer electronics, computer software, and online services. It is considered one of the Big Five companies in the U.S. information technology industry, along with Amazon, Google, Microsoft, and Facebook. It’s hardware products include the iPhone smartphones, the iPad tablets computer, the Mac personal computer, the iPod portable media player, the Apple Watch smartwatch, the Apple TV digital media player, the AirPods wireless earbuds, the AirPods Max headphones, and the HomePod smart speaker line. Apple’s software includes iOS, iPadOS, macOS, watchOS, and tvOS operating systems, the iTunes media player, the Safari web browser, the Shazam music identifier, and the iLife and iWork creativity and productivity suites, as well as professional applications like Final Cut Pro X, Logic Pro, and Xcode. Its online services include the iTunes Store, the iOS App Store, Mac App Store, Apple Arcade, Apple Music, Apple TV+, Apple Fitness+, iMessage, and iCloud. Other services include Apple Store, Genius Bar, AppleCare, Apple Pay, Apple Cash, and Apple Card.
Apple was founded by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne in April 1976 to develop and sell Wozniak’s Apple I personal computer, though Wayne sold his share back to Jobs and Wozniak within 12 days. It was incorporated as Apple Computer, Inc., in January 1977, and sales of its computers, including the Apple II, grew quickly.
Jobs and Wozniak hired a staff of computer designers and had a production line starting in Jobs’ garage. Apple went public in 1980 to instant financial success. Over the next few years, Apple shipped new computers featuring innovative graphical user interfaces, such as the original Macintosh in 1984, and Apple’s marketing advertisements for its products received widespread critical acclaim. However, the high price of its products and limited application library caused problems, as did power struggles between executives. In 1985, Wozniak departed Apple amicably and remained an honorary employee, while Jobs resigned to found NeXT, taking some Apple co-workers with him.
As the market for personal computers expanded and evolved through the 1990s, Apple lost considerable market share to the lower-priced duopoly of Microsoft Windows on Intel PC clones. The board recruited CEO Gil Amelio to what would be a 500-day attempt to rehabilitate the financially troubled company—reshaping it with layoffs, executive restructuring, and product focus. He led Apple to buy NeXT in 1997, solving a failed operating system strategy and bringing Jobs back.
Jobs regained leadership status, becoming CEO in September 1997. Apple swiftly returned to profitability under the revitalizing “Think different” campaign, rebuilding Apple’s status by launching the iMac and iPod, opening a retail chain of Apple Stores in 2001, and acquiring numerous companies to broaden the software portfolio. The company was renamed to Apple Inc. in 2007, reflecting a focus toward consumer electronics, and launched the iPhone to critical acclaim and financial success. In August 2011, Jobs resigned as CEO due to health complications, and Tim Cook became the new CEO. Two months later, Jobs died, marking the end of an era for the company. In June 2019, Jony Ive, Apple’s CDO, left the company to start his own firm, but stated he would work with Apple as its primary client.
Apple’s worldwide annual revenue totaled $274.5 billion for the 2020 fiscal year. Apple is the world’s largest technology company by revenue and one of the world’s most valuable companies. Apple is the world’s 4th-largest PC vendor by unit sales as of January 2021. It is also the world’s fourth-largest smartphone manufacturer. In August 2018, Apple became the first publicly traded U.S. company to be valued at over $1 trillion and just two years later, in August 2020 became the first $2 trillion U.S. company. Apple employs 147,000 full-time employees and maintains 510 retail stores in 25 countries as of 2020. It operates the iTunes Store, which is the world’s largest music retailer. As of January 2020, more than 1.5 billion Apple products are actively in use worldwide. The company also has a high level of brand loyalty and is ranked as the world’s most valuable brand. However, Apple receives significant criticism regarding the labor practices of its contractors, its environmental practices and unethical business practices, including anti-competitive behavior, as well as the origins of source materials (per Wikipedia).
First, a Story:
I made a lot of money investing in that Apple company, but then I lost it all in cider trading…
Second, a Song:
Epic Rap Battles of History (ERB) is a YouTube web series and music project created by Peter “Nice Peter” Shukoff and Lloyd “EpicLLOYD” Ahlquist. The series pits historical and pop culture figures against one another in a rap battle format. The characters portrayed are often determined by suggestions from viewers in the comments sections of the channel’s videos. Shukoff and Ahlquist write each song themselves, researching the subject in order to find obscure details to use as references in the lyrics. As of March 26, 2021, the channel has 14.7 million subscribers and approximately 3.7 billion total video views. Following an extended hiatus, the channel returned with a bonus battle in December 2018, and the sixth season debuted on April 20, 2019 and a seventh is set to begin during 2021.
Although early episodes of the series featured only Shukoff and Ahlquist, later episodes have regularly featured guest appearances, and other internet celebrities such as Dan Bull, Lisa Donovan, Timothy DeLaGhetto, George Watsky, DeStorm Power, Jesse Wellens, PewDiePie, Jenna Marbles, Lilly Singh, Ray William Johnson, Rhett and Link, and Smosh. Media celebrities like rappers Snoop Dogg, Chali 2na, and T-Pain, singers Jackie Tohn and “Weird Al” Yankovic, actors J.B. Smoove and Gary Anthony Williams, and the comedy duo Keegan-Michael Key and Jordan Peele have also appeared in the series.
On July 3, 2013, “Barack Obama vs. Mitt Romney” became the first of its singles to be certified Gold by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) in the United States. 10 other singles, “Adolf Hitler vs. Darth Vader”, “Albert Einstein vs. Stephen Hawking”, “Dr. Seuss vs. William Shakespeare”, “Master Chief vs. Leonidas”, “Steve Jobs vs. Bill Gates”, “Justin Bieber vs. Ludwig van Beethoven”, “Mario Brothers vs. Wright Brothers”, “Mr. T vs. Mr. Rogers”, “Abe Lincoln vs. Chuck Norris”, and “Hitler vs. Vader 2”, were subsequently certified Gold as well (per Wikipedia).
We return to Epic Rap Battles of History for the epic battle between Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. I hope you enjoy this!
Thought for the Day:
“If you haven’t found it yet, keep looking. Don’t settle. As with all matters of the heart, you’ll know when you find it. And, like any great relationship, it just gets better and better as the years roll on.” – Steve Jobs
In response to the Ether Smile, Carol Burman of Victoria, BC, Canada writes:
“Cute video! ”
Have a great day!
Dave & Colleen
© 2021 David J. Bilinsky and Colleen E. Bilinsky