Jill Amelio (CEO of Apple from 1994 to 1997), buying NeXT in 1996, sincerely hoped that Jobs’s creative genius would help out the Apple collective, teetering on the brink of hopelessness and crisis of ideas. Steve saw only himself in the role of the hero-savior, and he had good reasons for that.
The deal between Apple and NeXT came at an extremely convenient moment for Jobs. Firstly, his project has already grown to the level where he without much effort managed to gain an impressive $ 429 million from ex-colleagues. Secondly, a few months later, in January 1997, the MacWorldExpo conference was held and Steve was able to speak at her already as a keynote speaker from the organizer.
By that time, NeXT had become one of the direct competitors to the Mac platform, blocking that path into the business hardware segment with its advanced displays. Of course, this was far from the only reason why the company’s shares fell for the 12th year in a row, but Apple believed that Jobs would not only become an ally again, but also voluntarily share market share.
A modest historical date – July 4, 1997, Steve Jobs persuaded the board of directors to remove Gil Amelio from the CEO’s position by nominating himself in his place. In the status of interim head of the corporation, he stayed only until August and at the next conference announced the attraction of $ 150 million in investments from Microsoft. “We need any help we can get,” Steve reasoned.
Bill Gates, whose empire flourished, could easily afford such a gesture of friendship. However, among Microsoft’s partners there were those who, like Michael Dell, openly declared that Jobs was trying in vain, it would be easier and more expedient to shoot this driven horse, wind up the business and return the funds to shareholders.
But only six months later, “One More Thing” was played from the big stage for the first time. Steve Jobs announced Apple’s new credo – Microsoft money and his personal efforts to modernize the Mac family of computers have sprung up. The specter of bankruptcy has receded.
In the same year, the young but already experienced executive director Tim Cook joined the ranks of Cupertinos. He was assigned to control the sector of international operations – one of the most ramified and busy areas.
The emergence of cadres like Cook indicated that Jobs could no longer cope with all tasks alone. It is worth noting that in parallel with his work at Apple, he served as a producer and lead investor at Pixar Studios. In 1986, Steve invested $ 10 million in the studio, and in the credits to the famous “Toy Story” his name is one of the first.
The young Jobs the bully was replaced by a wise, caring, but strict boss. Apple’s campus is undergoing radical changes, and employees have a luxurious cafeteria. All attention should be focused on corporate interests.
August 1998 – Apple brand is proud to introduce the iMac to the world. A monoblock personal computer, an all-in-one workstation, whose godfather was Steve Jobs himself. A talented newcomer, Jony Ive, was responsible for the concept design.
The computer came out in a bright palette of multi-colored cases and critics did not fail to note – for the first time in the history of Apple, the external appearance of the product was given no less attention than its filling. The bold decision fully paid off, the first iMac series sold 800,000 copies in less than six months. This was the very long-awaited success that everyone in the company dreamed of in recent years.
In the bottom photo on the left is the same current Apple chief designer – Jony Ive.
Ken Segal went down in history, among other things, as the man who did not let Jobs call the new product “MacMan”, from the words “Mac” and “Man”. The combination “i + Mac” proposed by him could be interpreted much more flexibly – whoever wanted, saw the word “innovation” in the prefix, others believed that it was “individuality”, etc.
A year later, inspired by the success of the Cupertinians, they released the iBook, which was the same iMac, but squeezed into the format of an entry-level laptop. It was a cute, fun car for fans of the brand, but nothing more.
The next milestone in Apple’s history was the 2001 release of OS X. The old Mac OS 8, and then the 9th version, was, in fact, a clumsy treadmill that did not bring any benefit. Jobs decided on a large-scale redesign of the operating system, based on the Unix platform and solutions from BSD, previously tested in NeXT computers.
Apple is hitting a streak of luck, with the corporation doing so well that it dares to launch a personal retail chain that same year. The first Apple Stores with distinctive styling appeared in California and Virginia.
The first digital iPod appeared in October 2001, but it didn’t become famous. Consumers liked the concept of “1000 songs in your pocket”, but few were satisfied with the $ 399 price tag, and the strict attachment to the Mac as a source of content did not add attractiveness to the novelty.
The work on the errors in Cupertino was completed only two years later – in 2003, the iTunes Music Store service was launched. The concept of $ 0.99 per track comes into use, official Windows clients appear, and the iPod is transformed from a geek’s toy to the unofficial emperor of a new digital music universe.
In the same year, Steve Jobs was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He carefully concealed this from everyone, and above all from his own subordinates. The head of the company will dare to frankly confess only in another year.
At that time, Apple had already said goodbye to the status of a laughing stock, living out its days in the shadow of the almighty Microsoft. Over the next 3 years, the value of the shares of the apple company will increase from $ 6 to $ 80, its net profit will begin to be measured in lumpy sums, and the trademark will again be heard. Not trying to actively share the PC market with competitors, the corporation is following a parallel path, building a reputation as a pioneer in various areas of IT. Apple’s activities are in demand – pop stars of the U2 level and John Mayer appear at its events.
Start “Project Purple” (codename for the first iPhone) was given in 2004, Jobs demanded that engineers create a compact and high-precision touchscreen interface, and from Ive – dress it in a decent case. Both that, and another turned out to be a task, to put it mildly, difficult and the process dragged on for years. Interestingly, initially Steve talked about a tablet computer, and the Cupertinians came to the format of a mobile phone only as a result of failed experiments.
Not least was the observation of the evolution of the iPod lineup, which progressed at an extremely slow pace. By 2005, there were only 4 separate models on the market, small is smaller, but the gadget has already been trained to play video content and download it from iTunes. Together with other qualities, this gradually prepared the potential audience for the emergence of such a miracle as the first iPhone might have seemed to her.
Soon Apple had another business partner, Motorola, with which the ROKR mobile phone was developed. One of the first devices in its segment, capable, among other functions, to download and play music from iTunes. But with a rather absurd software, due to limitations in which only some 100 tracks fit in memory, which did not have a very positive effect on the level of sales.
2006-th – Jobs decides to arrange another reform, replacing the PowerPC processors in the Mac with Intel products. Thus, the long-standing mistake of John Scully, who at one time decided to take an alternative path than the entire PC industry, was finally corrected. The transition to chips from Intel allowed to kill two birds with one stone – to reduce the labor costs of developing software for Mac and the price of the computers themselves.
In addition, a single type of architecture made it possible to accomplish a hitherto unseen – to use software for Windows on the Mac platform and vice versa.
In the same 2006, in the very center of Manhattan, the now canon glass cube Apple Store was opened. Today it is officially listed as a New York City attraction.
In this photo, Jobs is shaking hands with Bob Iger, CEO of Disney. But she is notable not for this, but for Steve’s illusory thinness, in sharp contrast to the ruddy face of his counterpart. It became impossible to hide the disease from the general public.
The archives contain a letter from Apple’s corporate email – Steve Jobs sent a mailing to all employees. He recalled the old words of the Dell boss and stated that the apple company not only did not rest in the Bose, but already had a larger capitalization than the firm of the “false prophet”. “The stock price fluctuates back and forth and tomorrow everything may change dramatically again, but today, in my opinion, it reflects the state of affairs at Apple very accurately. Steve”.
In January 2007, at the MacWorld Expo conference, Jobs presented the iPhone to the world.
The first model made an indelible impression with its spacious touch screen by the standards of that time, the absence of buttons, the Safari browser specially designed for the phone and media options borrowed from the iPod.
“Telephone messiah”, “telephone from God” – as soon as the enthusiastic crowd did not call the novelty. Apple Store employees began to pay attention to long lines at the door and people sleeping on the doorstep.
The iPhone became an absolute hit of sales, after 74 days the coveted million copies of smartphones were sold.
The success needs to be strengthened and developed – in two years the company will present a significantly optimized iPhone 3GS model.
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In addition to a whole list of minor improvements, it was distinguished by the fact that it already supported the download and installation of software from the newly-made App Store. And it doesn’t matter that at the time of launch there were hardly half a thousand applications – the main thing is that in 2008, Cupertinos officially allowed third-party developers to develop and sell software for iOS.
Having earned a decent amount of money on iPhone sales and realizing that this trickle will not dry out for a long time, Apple begins to get involved in startups. The iFund is launched with the support of renowned venture capitalists. With a budget of $ 100 million at the start, it became a symbol of Apple’s superiority over Microsoft – the apple company begins to promote economic and educational solutions to the market, actively displacing competitors.
By 2008, Steve Jobs’s illness becomes a serious problem, however, the well-oiled mechanism of Apple’s work for the time being allows to smooth out the negative impression of the audience. The head of the company tries to actively speak in public, ridicules the topic of death and does not forget to criticize obvious bloopers, such as the 2,500-word obituary published by Bloomberg.
A year later, Jobs and Cook switch roles, the first goes on a long vacation for medical reasons, the second tries on the image of the company’s CEO. From time to time, having gained strength, Steve returns to his workplace, but he has nothing to complain about – the deputy works wonderfully well.
It remains to focus on creative work and in 2010 Steve Jobs finally demonstrates the iPad to the world, the very tablet he dreamed of since the beginning of this century.
The hugely popular iOS gadgets have unwittingly provoked opposition to web standards. Considering Adobe Flash technology slower, clumsy and unpromising, Jobs issued an imperious decree banning its support in the new eco-system. At first, this led to incidents with blank pages, then it began to threaten the business with advertising content on the Internet, but both sides did not come to an agreement.
The last two products that Steve managed to present to the audience in person are the iPad 2 and the iCloud cloud service.
Apple Park’s new campus goes live in fall 2018
Night of November 5, 2011, Apple headquarters. The flags at the entrance are at half-mast as a sign of mourning – on this day, the founder of the company, its savior and author of most outstanding products, Steve Jobs, passed away.
The new head of Apple was appointed and remains to this day Tim Cook. By adopting a thriving corporation, he multiplied its power and wealth. But that, as they say, is a completely different story.