From a Garage to a $1 Trillion Company - The Remarkable Story of Apple - Dispatch Weekly

August 7, 2018 - Reading time: 6 minutes

Apple recently hit the previously unimaginable valuation of $1 trillion. However, before iPhones, iPads and iEverything else; there was a beginning. It was a beginning that involved a garage, two remarkable and tech-infused minds and a fairy-tale dream to revolutionise the world – something Apple has accomplished and gone far beyond.

The Beginning

Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak founded ‘Apple Computer’ in April 1976. Jobs, a college dropout and Wozniak, an electrical engineer and computer science graduate from Berkley started their journey at Homebrew Computer Club. Wozniak was inspired to produce the ‘first computer with a typewriter-like keyboard and the ability to connect to a regular TV as a screen’, and formally known as the Apple I.

It was the Byte Shop in Mountain View that were the first to take on the Apple I, selling it at a price of $666.66 – which sounds like a bargain compared to the current Apple product pricing. It sounds strange to say now, but this was quite the gamble from the Byte Shop because the Apple I didn’t really exist anywhere else and Apple Computer didn’t even have the resources to complete each order. With only 200 built, the Apple I could now be sold for the small price of $905,000.

With the success of the Apple I it was only a matter of time until the Apple II was developed and so it was. Introduced in 1977, it was one of the most successful mass-produced microcomputer products of all time, which put Apple Computer and both Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak into the spotlight. The Apple II debuted the (at the time – extraordinary) colour graphic feature which led to a new demographic – households; the next step for Apple Computer.

Apple on the Rise

Next up in Apple’s timeline was the race between the LISA and Macintosh – the battle of the interfaces. Jobs was thrown off the LISA project and decided to embark on the Macintosh one – to which he envisioned a cheaper and better version of the LISA. The Macintosh outrun the less favourable LISA until the LISA was eventually modified and named the Macintosh XL.

The Macintosh was revolutionary; it was an affordable product with a GUI (graphical user interface) that provided users with tools to complete a variety of tasks. And it was the Macintosh that was developed and constantly re-vamped with new and better features.

As Apple grew and grew the board regarded Jobs as too inexperienced to cope with the pace that Apple was growing at and decided to look elsewhere in the shape of John Sculley. At the start, there were no problems between Jobs and Sculley, but disagreement over the direction of the Macintosh led to Jobs leaving Apple and founding NeXT.

With Jobs’ departure, Apple decided to target the high-end market with more expensive Macintosh’s. However, since Jobs had left, Apple seemed to slow down while key competitors such as IBM and Microsoft appeared to speed up leaving Apple in a position unnatural to them.

By 1996, Apple decided to buy NeXT and effectively bought back Jobs in the process. It seemed like Apple had simply just picked up where they left off before Jobs left and they were back on track. After years of iPod’s and Mac’s and their success, it was time for the launch of the iPhone.

The iPhone Movement

In 2007 the first-generation iPhone was released and it was the beginning of a revolution that changed the world. It was the first smartphone designed by Apple and its ingenious interface changed the mobile market forever. It’s just over 10 years later and we have an iPhone X which is covered completely by a screen, can be unlocked by your face and most impressively – can send messages of your face as an animated unicorn emoji.

On the 2nd August 2018, Apple became the first public company to be valued at $1 trillion. In 2011, Jobs sadly passed away but it is very clear and apparent that his legacy remains a key component of every Apple product designed and launched. With expert analysts predicting either downfalls in stocks or disputing the true value of Apple’s shares it’s impossible to see into the future of Apple.

However, no matter what your opinion of Apple is – there is no denying that it has changed the world we live in completely, and for some it has almost become abnormal not to own at least one Apple product. Jobs and Wozniak started the Apple dream in a garage, and now it’s worth $1 trillion. It’s safe to say that Apple has cemented itself in history.

DW Staff

David Lintott is the Editor-in-Chief, leading our team of talented freelance journalists. He specializes in covering culture, sport, and society. Originally from the decaying seaside town of Eastbourne, he attributes his insightful world-weariness to his roots in this unique setting.