History of Apple 1995-1996 – Most Significant Events

The PowerMac family, introduced in 1994, was developed through 1995. It was the first Mac to be based on the PowerPC chip, an extremely fast processor co-developed with IBM and Motorola. At the same time Mac OS was licensed to several companies, including Power Computing, one of the more successful Mac-clone makers (but only a handful of companies ever licensed the Mac OS because Apple was too restrictive in its licensing agreements). Apple’s problems were added to by the late-summer release of Windows ’95, which mimicked the Mac GUI. Thus Apple took its worst plunge ever in the winter of 1995-96. The company misjudged the market and pushed low-cost Performas over mid-range PowerMacs. Applefailed to make a profit at all.

History of Apple 1995-1996

Apple History 1995

January 4, 1995: At the Macworld Expo in San Francisco, California, Motorola introduces the Marco Wireless Communicator, based on the Apple Newton. The new communicator It features wireless communications. It weighs 1.8 pounds and costs US$900-1400.

January 1995: Apple Computer ships QuickTime VR, bringing virtual reality to Macintosh and Windows-based home computers.

January 1995: Radius Incorporated demonstrates the first Power Macintosh clone, using Apple Computer’s licensed System 7 operating system.

January 19, 1995: Apple announces that it has shipped the 1 millionth Power Macintosh computer or upgrade. Globally, Apple takes 13% of the U.S. retail market share for personal computers.

January 30, 1995: Apple Computer announces availability of the Newton MessagePad 120 in the US. It includes Graffiti handwriting recognition software by Palm Computing, and Newton OS 1.3.

January (?): Apple Computer ships an updated Houdini board, the DOS Compatibility Card for the Power Macintosh. The card gives a 486DX2/66, sound, and 800×600 SVGA graphics. Its price is $740

February 14, 1995: Apple Computer extends its December 1994 lawsuit against San Francisco Canyon Company to include Microsoft and Intel. Microsoft removes the disputed code from Video for Windows, and releases version 1.1.

February 21, 1995: The US Supreme Court refuses to hear Apple Computer’s “look-and-feel” copyright suit against Microsoft and Hewlett-Packard.

March 1995: Apple Computer signs a licensing agreement with DayStar Digital, allowing the company to produce Macintosh compatible computers.

March 1995: Apple Computer announces the Power Macintosh 5200/75 LC for the education market, using the 75 MHz PowerPC 603 processor.

March 1995: Apple Europe introduces the Power Mac 6200 series in Europe.

March 1995: Apple Computer introduces the new Apple CD 6003 quad-speed CD-ROM player.

April 1995: Apple Computer and DayStar Digital announce joint development of the Apple MP API for multiprocessing Apple Macintosh applications.

May 1995: Apple Computer unveils the next generation of its Mac OS at its Worldwide Developers Conference.

May 1995: Power Computing, the first company to license Apple Computer’s Power Mac technology, begins shipping its first Power Mac clones.

May 1995: Apple Computer ships System 7.5.2 for the Macintosh, with PCI bus support.

June 1995: Apple Computer introduces its first PowerMac system using Intel’s PCI bus, the Power Macintosh 9500. Code-name of the computer during development was Tsunami. The device is available with a 120 MHz or 132 MHz PowerPC 604 CPU. The 9500/120 with a 1 GB hard drive costs US$5000. The 9500/132 with 2 GB drive costs US$5800. Intel announces the immediate availability of the 133 MHz Pentium processor. It uses 3.2 million transistors, employing 0.35 micron BiCMOS technology. Speed is 218.9 MIPS. Price is US$935 each in quantities of 1000.

June 1995: Apple Computer introduces its Color Laser Printer 12/600PS which is the first color laser printer. The 600×600 dpi printer comes with 12 MB of RAM, uses a Canon-based engine, and costs about US$7,000.

June 1995: Shipments of Apple Computer Power Mac computers and upgrade cards to date: 2 million.

June 1995: Apple demonstrates the user interface of its Copland operating system.

July 1995: Apple introduces the Power Macintosh 7200/90, with 90 MHz PowerPC 601 processor, 500 MB hard drive, 4X CD-ROM, 16 MB RAM, and 2 MB video RAM.

July 1995: Apple introduces the Power Macintosh 7500/100, with 100 MHz PowerPC 601 processor, 500 MB hard drive, 4X CD-ROM, 16 MB RAM, and 2 MB video RAM.

July 1995: Apple introduces the Power Macintosh 8500, with a 120 MHz PowerPC 604 processor, 16 MB RAM, 1GB hard drive, 24 bit video I/O, three PCI slots, and 4X CD-ROM drive. Price is about US$4000.

July 1995: Apple announces the Performa 6116CD computer. It features 60 MHz PowerPC 601 processor, 8 MB RAM, 700 MB hard drive, 2X CD-ROM drive, 14-inch monitor, external modem, one NuBus slot, and keyboard. Price is US$1899.

July 1995: Apple announces the Performa 5200CD computer. It features 75 MHz PowerPC 603 processor, 8 MB RAM, 800 MB hard drive, 4X CD-ROM drive, fax/modem, and built-in monitor. Price is about US$2000.

July 28, 1995: Columbia Pictures releases the film The Net to theaters. Several types of Apple Macintosh computers are used throughout the film. The game Wolfenstein 3D is played/debugged on a Macintosh computer.

August 1995: Apple introduces the Power Macintosh 7200 computer. The device features a 75 MHz PowerPC 601 processor, 8 MB RAM, 500 MB hard drive, 4X CD-ROM drive, three PCI slots, SCSI and Ethernet connectors. Price is about US$1700. Price for 90 MHz is US$1900.

August 1995: Apple introduces the Power Macintosh 7500, with a 100 MHz PowerPC 601 processor, 16 MB RAM, 500 MB hard drive, 2 MB VRAM, 4X CD-ROM drive, floppy drive, Ethernet, and three PCI bus slots. Price is US$2700.

August 1995: Apple introduces QuickDraw 3D.

August 1995: Apple releases an update to QuickTime, adding support for animation tracks.

August 25, 1995: Apple Computer releases the PowerBook 5300 series.

August 1995: IBM begins shipping 117 MHz PowerPC 603e processors to Apple Computer.

September 14, 1995: Apple Computer recalls all PowerBook 5300 computers to exchange Sony-manufactured lithium-ion batteries for nickel-metal-hydride batteries, due to two fires in early units white charging.

September 15, 1995: United Artists releases the film Hackers. Various personal computers are used throughout the film to control television programming, a supercomputer, traffic lights, building lights, and more. Apple Computer products appear on the screen (3.5-inch disk drive, portable computer, windowing software).

November 1995: Apple ships a beta test version of its “Copland” operating system to 50 key application developers.

November 1995: Apple abandons release of Dylan programming language due to the success of Java.

November 14, 1995: IBM, Apple Computer, and Motorola release the PowerPC Platform specifications, called the Common Hardware Reference Platform (CHRP). It encompasses support for Macintosh System 7, Windows NT, AIX, Solaris, NetWare, and OS/2, but Windows 3.x and Windows 95 are excluded.

November 1995: At Fall Comdex, Apple Computer unveils the Newton 2.0 operating system, with ability to synchronize data with Windows and Mac OS applications, screen rotation, and revised handwriting recognition. At the same trade show Power Computing introduces the PowerWave 604/120 Macintosh-compatible computer. It features a 120 MHz PowerPB 604 processor, three PCI expansion slots, ATI Xclaim GA graphics card, keyboard, mouse, optional ($250) PCI/NuBus dual bus slots, 16 MB RAM, 1 GB hard disk, 4X CD-ROM drive. Price is US$3199. Power Computing introduces the PowerWave 604/132 Macintosh-compatible computer. It features a 132 MHz PowerPB 604 processor, three PCI expansion slots, ATI Xclaim GA graphics card, keyboard, mouse, optional ($250) PCI/NuBus dual bus slots, 16 MB RAM, 1 GB hard disk, 4X CD-ROM drive. Price is US$3699. Power Computing also introduces the PowerWave 604/150 Macintosh-compatible computer. It features a 150 MHz PowerPB 604 processor, three PCI expansion slots, ATI Xclaim GA graphics card, keyboard, mouse, optional ($250) PCI/NuBus dual bus slots, 16 MB RAM, 1 GB hard disk, 4X CD-ROM drive. Price is US$4718.

November 17, 1995: IBM, Apple Computer, and Hewlett-Packard dissolve Taligent Inc.

December 1995: The IEEE Standards Board accepts Apple Computer’s FireWire design as IEEE 1394-1995 Standard for a High Performance Serial Bus, dubbed IEEE 1394.

December 1995: According to Bureau of statistics, market share of Windows applications in world regions: Western Europe 92%, Eastern Europe 93%, Asia/Pacific 89%, North America 75%. Market share of Macintosh applications in world regions: Western Europe 3.8%, North America 14%. Market share of MS-DOS applications in world regions: Western Europe 3.5%, North America 9.5%. Shipments of personal computers in the US for the year: Compaq Computer 2,756,000, Packard Bell 2,554,000, Apple Computer 2,504,000, IBM 1,876,000, Gateway 2000 1,143,000, Dell Computer 1,036,000, Hewlett-Packard 1,004,000, Acer America 819,000, Toshiba 779,000, AST Research 536,000. Personal computer market share in the US for the year: Compaq Computer 12.2%, Packard Bell 11.3%, Apple Computer 11.1%, IBM 8.3%, Gateway 2000 5.1%, Dell Computer 4.6%, Hewlett-Packard 4.5%, Acer America 3.6%, Toshiba 3.5%, AST Research 2.4%.

Apple History 1996

January 1996: Apple Computer begins shipping the PowerBook 5300ce.

January 1996: Apple Computer’s board of directors fire CEO Michael Spindler, and demote co-founder Mike Markkula from chairman to vice chairman.

January 9, 1996: Apple Computer officially unveils the Newton 2.0 operating system.

January 11, 1996: Umax Data Systems of Taiwan buys Radius’ Macintosh business, including the Macintosh operating system license. Umax will set up a US company, Umax Computer, to produce a line of Macintosh compatible computers.

January 31, 1996: At Demo 96 in Palm Springs, California, Apple Computer gives the first public showing of the Mac OS running on a PowerPC Platform (PPCP) computer. The prototype, built by IBM, uses a 132MHz PowerPC 604 processor.

February 2, 1996: At an emergency meeting of the board of directors of Apple Computer in New York, CEO Michael Spindler is demoted. He is replaced by Gilbert Amelio, who will also asume the position of Chairman of Apple Computer. « Spindler, by all accounts, was the wrong man for the job. A fairly impersonal man, Spindler’s office was nearly impossible to get into. However, in his two and a half years as CEO, Spindler oversaw several accomplishments. »  (Glen Sanford, Apple History).

February 9, 1996: Bandai Digital Entertainment unveils the Pippin Atmark computer. The system is licensed from Apple Computer, comes with keyboard, mouse, and modem for Internet access, and plugs into a television.

February 19, 1996: Apple Computer announces that Motorola’s Computer Group has licensed the Mac OS. Motorola can also sub-license the Mac OS to other manufacturers who purchase PowerPC motherboards from Motorola.

March 1996: At the CeBIT trade show in Hannover, Germany, Apple Computer introduces the Apple Newton MessagePad 130, with transreflective LCD with an electroluminescent backlight, battery life about 8 hours (4 with backlight on), 1.2 MB heap space, 20 MHz ARM 610 RISC processor, 320 x 240 pixel display, one Type II PC Card slot, 2.5 MB internal RAM, for US$799.

March 1996: Apple Computer releases System 7.5 Update 2.0.

March 1996: Apple Computer introduces the Power Macintosh 9500/150, with a 150 MHz PowerPC 604 processor.

April 29, 1996: Power Computing releases the PowerTower line and the PowerCenter line of Macintosh-compatible computers. All systems use the PowerPC 604 processor, and range in price from US$1895 to US$4195.

May 6, 1996: Apple licenses the Mac OS to IBM, which may sub-license it to other manufacturers.

May 10, 1996: Apple Computer halts PowerBook 5300 production and initiates a recall.

May 14, 1996: In Los Angeles, California, Bandai Digital Entertainment announces the Pippin @World Apple compatible computer. The device includes a keyboard and CD-ROM player. It can be hooked up to a television and connected to the Internet. Bandai expects to ship the device in September, priced at US$599.

May 1996: At Apple Computer’s Worldwide Developers Conference, IBM and Motorola announce sampling of 200 MHz PowerPC 603e and 604e processors. Both employ an 0.35 micron CMOS process. Motorola announces pricing for the PowerPC 603e at US$224 (166 MHz), US$256 (180 MHz), and US$360 (200 MHz).

May 19, 1996: The Fox Broadcasting Company airs The Simpsons TV show in the US. A character refers to the Us Festival, sponsored by that guy from Apple Computers. Response by another character is What Computers?

May 20, 1996: Apple Computer joins the Network Computer Coalition.

May 22, 1996: Paramount Pictures releases the film Mission: Impossible. A small Apple portable computer is used.

May 28, 1996: Apple announces the Macintosh Performa 6320CD computer. It features 120 MHz 603e PowerPC processor, 16 MB RAM, 1.2 GB hard drive, CD-ROM drive, sixteen preinstalled titles and fifteen CD-ROM titles. Price is US$2599.

June 1996: Apple releases OpenDoc v1.0.

June 1996: At PC Expo, Apple Computer, IBM, and Motorola demo a 133 MHz PowerPC 604 prototype system running both the MacOS and Microsoft Windows NT.

July 26, 1996: Apple releases QuickTime 2.5 for Macintosh (System 6.0.7 or higher), adding support for interchangeable Motion JPEG video compression format.

August 2, 1996: Apple introduces the dual-processor Power Macintosh 9500/180 MP computer. It features two 180 MHz PowerPC 604e processors, 32 MB RAM, 2 GB hard drive, and 8x CD-ROM drive. price is US$5699.

August 1996: Apple introduces the Power Macintosh 9500/200. It features a 200 MHz PowerPC 604e processor, 32 MB RAM, 2 GB hard drive, 8X CD-ROM drive.

August 1996: Apple introduces the Performa 6400 computer. It features 180 or 200 MHz PowerPC 603e processor, optional 256 kB L2 cache, 16 MB RAM, 1.6 or 2.4 GB hard drive, and two PCI slots.

August 1996: Apple Computer cancels development work on its Copland and Gershwin operating system projects.

August 1996: Apple Computer, IBM, Netscape, Oracle, and Sun Microsystems introduce the network computer idea.

September 17, 1996: Motorola announces its entry into the Power Macintosh clone market, by unveiling the StarMax series, featuring the PowerPC 603e and 604e processors, operating at 166 MHz and 200 MHz.

September 19, 1996: Apple Computer releases the System 7.5.5 Macintosh operating system.

July-September 1996: Market share of personal computers in the world for July to September: Apple Computer 5.5%. Market share of personal computers in the U.S. for July to September: Apple Computer 7%.

October 1996: Apple Computer introduces the PowerBook 1400 series, featuring removable modular CD-ROM drive and flip-up keyboard.

October 1996: Umax Computer begins shipping SuperMac C500 and C600 Macintosh systems.

October 18, 1996: Apple introduces the Apple Performa 6360 CD computer. It features 160 MHz PowerPC 603e processor, 8X CD-ROM drive, 28.8 kbps modem, 1 MB video RAM, 16 MB RAM, 1.2 GB Quantum IDE hard drive, one PCI slot, and over 24 applications and 15 CD-ROM discs. Price is US$1499. Apple computer introduces the Performa 6400/200 “Video Editing Edition”. It features 200 MHz 603e PowerPC processor, 32 MB RAM, 2.4 GB hard drive, 1 MB video RAM, 28.8 kbps modem, 8X CD-ROM drive, 256 kB level-2 cache, Avid Cinema video editing software, and over 24 applications and 15 CD-ROM discs. Price is US$2699.

October 21, 1996: At the Microprocessor Forum, Exponential Technology debuts the 533 MHz X704 PowerPC compatible processor for the Macintosh OS and Windows NT microcomputers.

October 28, 1996: Apple Computer unveils the MessagePad 2000 computer. It features 1 MB DRAM, 5 MB Flash RAM, 2 Type II PC Card slots, backlit 480 x 320 100 dpi display, size 4.7 x 8.3 inches, Newton OS 2.1, 1.4 pound weight, and 161.9 MHz StrongARM 110 RISC processor. It runs on four AA batteries.

November 1996: Apple Computer unveils the eMate 300 mobile computer.

November 27, 1996: Apple Computer engineers and a manager meet with NeXT managers to investigate possibility of using OPENSTEP OS for future Mac computers.

December 1996: Apple makes an announcement that it would be acquiring NeXT, and that Steven Jobs would be returning to the fold. The merger was brought about in order to acquire NeXTstep, which was to become the basis for Apple’s next-generation OS, Rhapsody.

December 1, 1996: Bandai Digital Entertainment introduces the @World entertainment system in the US. It features 66 MHz PowerPC 603 processor, 5 MB RAM, 4X CD-ROM drive, 28.8 kbps modem, Mac OS System 7.5.2 in 1 MB of RAM, controller with trackball and buttons, video output to TV (NTSC format). The system is based on Apple Computer’s Pippin technology. Price is US$499.

December 2, 1996: Steve Jobs meets with senior Apple Computer managers to convince them that NeXT technology is right for Apple.

December 20, 1996: Apple Computer announces it will buy the NeXT Software company for about US$400 million in cash and Apple stock. NeXT Software CEO Steve Jobs will become an advisor to Apple chairman and CEO Gilbert Amelio.

December 31, 1996: Market share of personal computers in the US during September to December: Compaq Computer 14%, IBM 9.6%, Packard Bell 8.5%, Dell Computer 8, Gateway 2000 7.1%, Toshiba 6.9%, Hewlett-Packard 6.7%, Apple Computer 5.2%, Acer 4.2%, NEC 2.8%.

December 31, 1996: Personal computer market share for the year: Apple Computer Macintosh 6.5%. Worldwide shipments of personal computers for the year: 70.9 million. Shipments of personal computers worldwide during the year: Compaq Computer 7.1 million, IBM 6.09 million, Packard Bell NEC 4.3 million. Worldwide personal computer market share: Compaq Computer 10.1%, IBM 8.6%, Packard Bell/NEC 6%, Apple Computer 5.5%, Dell Computer 4%, Hewlett-Packard 4%.


  • Chronology of Events in the History of Microcomputers: islandnet.com/~kpolsson/comphist.
  • Apple History: http://www.apple-history.com.
  • Wikipedia.
  • iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It. 2007. by Steve Wozniak and Gina Smith.
  • Steve Jobs by Walter Isaacson.


  • Sell your old Mac Now to iGotOffer: We offer the best price online, your old computer is save with us – Sell My old electronics online now for top dollar!

The History of Apple (40th Anniversary). Video published by Martin Nobel on May 2, 2016. How have three Atari workers managed to turn Apple from a company in a garage into one of the most powerful brands in the world? This is the history of Apple, after 40 years!


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