How Apple became one of the largest companies in the world [Video]


Apple (AAPL) is one of the world’s most recognizable companies. With a market valuation well north of $2 trillion, after briefly touching $3 trillion last year, its devices are universal; used everywhere from Alaska to Zimbabwe. From the advent of the personal computer, to the dark days following Steve Jobs’ ouster, to the unprecedented success of the iPhone, Apple is easily one of the biggest, most successful companies on Earth. And here’s how the tech giant made it all happen.

The two Steves

Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne founded Apple in 1976. Shortly after founding the company, Wayne sold off his 10% stake, leaving Jobs and Wozniak.

Wozniak created Apple’s first device, the Apple I, building the original by hand with a wooden casing as a kit computer.

The Apple II, also designed by Wozniak, launched a year later, achieving far more commercial success. It was a self-contained system with a plastic case and keyboard. However, it was the VisiCalc spreadsheet app which ran on the Apple II that helped make it a must-have for businesses and business users alike.

In 1980 Apple released Apple III, the first computer Wozniak didn’t design. The computer had a litany of problems, including heating issues that caused the solder on the motherboard to melt, and chips to pop out of their sockets. Jobs later called the losses from the Apple III “incalculable.”

Apple then began work on the Lisa and Macintosh, both of which used graphical user interfaces. The Lisa landed in 1983, but failed due to its $10,000 price tag. The $2,495 Macintosh, however, was a mass market success, and ushered in the age of modern personal computing.

Apple Inc CEO Steve Jobs delivers the keynote address at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, California, June 6, 2011. Jobs strode back into the spotlight on Monday to unveil the iCloud, a music-streaming service that the company hopes will power its next stage of growth and popularize Web-based consumer services.   
 
REUTERS/Beck Diefenback    (UNITED STATES - Tags: BUSINESS SCI TECH PROFILE)

Apple Inc CEO Steve Jobs delivers the keynote address at the Apple Worldwide Developers Conference in San Francisco, California, June 6, 2011. REUTERS/Beck Diefenback

Wozniak and Jobs leave

Apple’s first CEO was Michael Scott, who came from National Semiconductor in 1977. Mike Markkula, an early investor and Apple’s third employee, took over from Scott in 1981, leading the company until 1983.

That year, Jobs pitched then-Pepsi CEO John Sculley to become Apple’s CEO by asking if he wanted to sell sugared water the rest of his life, or change the world….

Source…