Apple II series

Apple II series
Apple II.png
Apple II-IMG 7064.jpg
The 1977 Apple II, shown here with two Disk II floppy disk drives and a 1980s-era Apple Monitor II
DeveloperSteve Wozniak (original lead designer)
ManufacturerApple Computer, Inc.
Release dateJune 1977 (1977-06) (original Apple II)[1]
DiscontinuedOctober 1993 (1993-10)
Operating system
DisplayNTSC video out (built-in RCA connector)
PredecessorApple I
SuccessorApple III (intended)

The Apple II series (trademarked with square brackets as "Apple ][" and rendered on later models as "Apple //") is a family of home computers, one of the first highly successful mass-produced microcomputer products,[2] designed primarily by Steve Wozniak, manufactured by Apple Computer (now Apple Inc.), and launched in 1977 with the original Apple II.

In terms of ease of use, features, and expandability, the Apple II was a major advancement over its predecessor, the Apple I, a limited-production bare circuit board computer for electronics hobbyists. Through 1988, a number of models were introduced, with the most popular, the Apple IIe, remaining relatively unchanged into the 1990s.

A model with more advanced graphics and sound and a 16-bit processor, the Apple IIGS, was added in 1986. It remained compatible with earlier Apple II models, but the IIGS had more in common with mid-1980s systems like the Atari ST, Amiga, and Acorn Archimedes.

An Apple II+

The Apple II was first sold on June 10, 1977.[3][4] By the end of production in 1993, somewhere between five and six million Apple II series computers (including about 1.25 million Apple IIGS models) had been produced.[5] The Apple II was one of the longest running mass-produced home computer series, with models in production for just under 17 years.

The Apple II became one of several recognizable and successful computers during the 1980s and early 1990s, although this was mainly limited to the US. It was aggressively marketed through volume discounts and manufacturing arrangements to educational institutions, which made it the first computer in widespread use in American secondary schools, displacing the early leader Commodore PET. The effort to develop educational and business software for the Apple II, including the 1979 release of the popular VisiCalc spreadsheet, made the computer especially popular with business users and families.[6][7][8]

An Apple IIe with disk drive and monitor

Despite the introduction of the Motorola 68000-based Macintosh in 1984, the Apple II series still reportedly accounted for 85% of the company's hardware sales in the first quarter of fiscal 1985.[9] Apple continued to sell Apple II systems alongside the Macintosh until terminating the IIGS in December 1992[10] and the IIe in November 1993.[11] The last II-series Apple in production, the IIe card for Macintoshes, was discontinued on October 15, 1993. The total Apple II sales of all of its models during its 16-year production run were about 6 million units, with the peak occurring in 1983 when 1 million were sold.

  1. ^ Weyhrich, Steven (July 10, 2010). "1969-1977". Apple II History. Archived from the original on May 17, 2022. Retrieved October 2, 2016.
  2. ^ Reimer, Jeremy (December 14, 2005). "Total share: 30 years of personal computer market share figures". Archived from the original on October 22, 2008. Retrieved May 25, 2010.
  3. ^ "June 10, 1978 - Apple II Released Today". This Day in History. Mountain View, CA: Computer History Museum. Archived from the original on June 20, 2012. Retrieved August 3, 2012.
  4. ^ Weyhrich, Steven (December 2008). "4-The Apple II, cont. - Product Introduction". Apple II History. Archived from the original on July 22, 2011. Retrieved August 3, 2012. The first motherboard-only Apple II computers shipped on May 10, 1977, for those who wanted to add their own case, keyboard, and power supply (or wanted to update their Apple-1 "system" with the latest and greatest). A month later, on June 10, 1977, Apple began shipping full Apple II systems.
  5. ^ Forster, Winnie (2005). The encyclopedia of consoles, handhelds & home computers 1972–2005. GAMEPLAN. p. 18. ISBN 3-00-015359-4.
  6. ^ Chris Cavanaugh (May 2004). "Apple II Biography". Archived from the original on September 18, 2009. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  7. ^ Wilson Rothman (July 19, 2009). "Apple II: The World Catches On". Archived from the original on October 16, 2009. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  8. ^ Mary Bellis. "The First Spreadsheet". Archived from the original on April 13, 2020. Retrieved October 7, 2009.
  9. ^ Libes, Sol (June 1985). "Apple Bytes and Pits". BYTE. pp. 468–469. Retrieved October 27, 2013.
  10. ^ "Apple IIGS // Collections". May 23, 2005. Archived from the original on December 28, 2010. Retrieved May 25, 2010.
  11. ^ Steven Weyhrich (May 16, 2003). "Apple II History Timeline". Archived from the original on July 10, 2010. Retrieved May 25, 2010.

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