How did Steve Jobs make NeXT successful?

Steve Jobs: Products of a Career

Christian Möller

Steve Jobs would have turned 65 today. We recap his life with a list of the products he created or influenced.

EnlargeSteve Jobs: Products of a Career

Steve Jobs would have turned 65 today; he died of cancer at the age of only 56. You can write a lot about how strongly the man influenced, and even created, the IT industry. We have collected the most prominent products that came about in one way or another under the influence of Steve Jobs.

EnlargeSteve Jobs in 1999 at the launch of the first iBook in New York

1976: Apple 1

Apple's first computer was still handcrafted. The Apple I was a development by Apple co-founder Steve Wozniak. Steve Jobs helped with production in his parents' garage. The Apple I was only available as a kit. It was based on the 6502 processor, which was later also used by the Commodore company in the C64 home computer.

1977: Apple II

The Apple II is also equipped with the 6502 chip. However, it is one of the first personal computers to be mass-produced on an industrial scale. Apple sold around two million copies.

1983: Lisa

Enlarge1983: Apple Lisa 2

Inspired by a visit to Xerox, Steve Jobs leads the development of the first Apple computer with a graphical user interface and mouse operation. The Lisa comes onto the market in 1983, but at just under $ 10,000 it is far too expensive for the mass market.

1984: Macintosh

Apple launched the Macintosh in January 1984 with a great stir. Steve Jobs pushed the computer, which cost around $ 2500, against resistance in his own company. It becomes the first commercially successful mouse-operated computer. Today, essential parts of the operating concept of computers are still based on fundamentals laid by the Macintosh.

1986: Jobs founds Next

After disputes at Apple, Steve Jobs leaves the Mac manufacturer and founds Next. Next is initially concentrating on the same markets as Apple: modern computer hardware with a graphical operating system. Next later stops hardware development and focuses on the Unix-based Next operating system "Next Step".

1986: Jobs buys Pixar

Almost at the same time as the founding of Next, Steve Jobs bought the computer graphics team from the film producer George Lucas ("Star Wars") from his private fortune. The new company is called Pixar and is developing into one of the world's most influential computer animation studios.

1997: Jobs back at Apple

Apple is on the ground. High losses put pressure on the share price. In search of a modern operating system, Apple, under the leadership of Gil Amelio, bought Next at the end of 1996. Steve Jobs ends up at Apple again and with him the Next-Step development team comes to Cupertino. The development of Mac OS X begins.

1998: iMac

Even if the iMac is not Steve Jobs' only child (its development was started by Gil Amelio), the knobbly Internet computer will remain inextricably linked with Steve Jobs and the resurgence of the Apple brand.

2000: Mac OS X

After nearly four years of development, Steve Jobs’s efforts to turn Next Step into a new Mac operating system showed fruit. In September 2000, Mac OS X was officially launched. However, in the form of a hardly usable beta version that still cost money. Apple asked for $ 30. Only a year later a usable version appeared with version 10.1, code name "Puma". Apple brought this as a free update to 10.0.

2000: Power Mac G4 Cube

Enlarge2000: Apple Power Mac G4 Cube

Not everything Steve Jobs believed worked out. The best example is the Power Mac G4 Cube. Introduced in mid-2000, it was technically way ahead of its time. No other computer manufacturer has managed to squeeze this CPU and graphics performance into a cube with an edge length of just 8 inches. But the Cube was far too expensive and difficult to upgrade. It found only a few buyers and was withdrawn from the program a year later.

2001: iPod

Initially hardly noticed, Steve Jobs introduced a small, hard drive-based MP3 player in October 2001. With a capacity of five gigabytes and a Firewire connection, the device was unique in its performance at the time. But 520 euros was too much money for the white player with the rotary wheel. In addition, the iPod was initially only usable with a Mac computer. It was not until the beginning of 2003 that Apple released the iTunes synchronization software for Windows as well. This marked the beginning of an incomparable triumph of the iPod around the world.

2003: Power Mac G5

In 2003 Steve Jobs proudly presented the first Power Mac with a G5 CPU as the fastest computer in the world. In fact, it quickly became a real power hog. The G5 chip manufactured by IBM can only be tamed by special cooling measures. The three-gigahertz version announced for a year later never came onto the market due to technical problems.

2006: Intel Macs

In January 2006, Steve Jobs declared the era of Power PC processors to be over. From now on, the former arch-rival Intel should fill the hearts of Macs. The decision had been prepared for a long time. A small team on the Apple campus has been preparing the porting from Mac OS X to Intel chips over the years. The many critics of the decision quickly fell silent, because since the introduction of the Intel Macs Apple has sold more computers than ever before.

2006: Apple TV

The Apple TV was intended as an iPod for the living room. Contrary to custom, Steve Jobs presented the device in advance notice in September 2006 under the code name "iTV". The device did not come onto the market until March 2007. The set-top box was never particularly successful. The new edition from 2010 runs with iOS and is much cheaper.

2007: iPhone

Long awaited, Apple made the dream of its own mobile phone come true in 2007. Steve Jobs proudly presented the cell phone to an enthusiastic audience at WWDC 2007. Similar to the way the iPod turned the global music business inside out, the iPhone caused shock waves in the cell phone market that continue to this day.

2010: iPad

Apple CEO's latest coup, the iPad, has at least the same potential as the iPhone. Steve Jobs ’vision of a" post-PC era ", in which classic computers with a mouse and keyboard can soon be dispensed with entirely, seems to be becoming reality with the iPad.

2017: Apple Park

EnlargeNo visitor may enter the torus, but admire it as an AR application in the visitor center

What? Apple Park? Apple's new office was only opened for employees in 2017, and later for ordinary visitors. That's right, the project has been around since at least 2010. Steve Jobs defended the project before the Cupertino city council in June 2011, which was probably his last public appearance before his death. He never saw the start of construction. The idea of ​​a nature resort instead of a conventional office building was his, and he probably also approved the project by star architect Norman Forster. It is also significant that Apple Park became one of Jony Ive's last projects at Apple. Shortly after completion, the chief designer said goodbye to his long-term employer.