Apple Inc. is an American multinational corporation that designs and manufactures consumer electronics and software products. It was established in Cupertino, California, on April 1, 1976, by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne, and was incorporated on January 3, 1977. The company's hardware products include the Macintosh line of personal computers, the iPod line of portable media players, the iPad line of tablets, the iPhone line of smartphones, the Apple TV line of digital media players, and the Apple Watch line of smartwatches. Apple's software products include the macOS, iOS, iPadOS, tvOS, and watchOS operating systems, the iTunes media player, the Safari web browser, and the iLife suite of multimedia and creativity software. As of September 2023[update], Apple is publicly known to have acquired more than 100 companies. The actual number of acquisitions is possibly larger as Apple does not reveal the majority of its acquisitions unless discovered by the press. Apple has cofounded two half-equity partnerships and purchased equity stakes in three preexisting companies, and has made three divestments. Apple has not released the financial details for the majority of its mergers and acquisitions.
Apple's business philosophy is to acquire small companies that can be easily integrated into existing company projects. For instance, Apple acquired Emagic and its professional music software, Logic Pro, in 2002. The acquisition was incorporated in the creation of the digital audio workstation software GarageBand, an integral part of the iLife software suite, and now one of the leading digital audio workstations on iOS and MacOS.
The company made its first acquisition on March 2, 1988, with its purchase of Network Innovations. In 2013, Apple acquired thirteen companies. Apple's largest acquisition was that of Beats Electronics in August 2014 for $3 billion. Of the companies Apple has acquired, 71 were based in the United States.