The Mexican computer that could be as big as IBM or Apple


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Printaform released such a novel computer in the 1980s that it shook IBM and Apple. Everything was going well until fate changed.

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5 min read

This article was translated from our Spanish edition using AI technologies. Errors may exist due to this process.

This story originally appeared on México Desconocido

By Josué Huerta

If you do not want to get angry or have the desire to go back in time, we recommend not reading this chronicle. Because it is about the story of how the Mexican Printaform computers could have become the giants of the industry, much like the IBM or the Macs, but things did not turn out well due to a series of events that could have been avoided. You are warned.

The battle of Mexican computers against IBM and Apple

The worldwide boom in having a personal computer in the office or at home began in the 1980s, first with the arrival of the IBM PC 5150 on August 12, 1981, and then with the launch of the Macintosh 128K . What has been erased from virtually every book in the history of computing is that Mexico entered this battle with the launch of the Printaform Cado Systems computer.

Image: Via Mexico Unknown

And he entered this war for three main reasons: that IBM and Macintosh computers were very expensive for the vast majority of Mexicans, that President José López Portillo promoted the creation of a “Mexican technology industry” and that Printaform, a Mexican company that was born manufacturing stationery products, already had by the 80’s experience in the manufacture of calculators, electric typewriters, cash registers and other cybernetic devices.

Printaform wows the world with its draggable computer

But the Cado Systems had been only the first success of Printaform, because months later it gave a stronger milestone with the launch, at a US trade show, of the ” Trailed Printaform Columbia with 12-inch monitor “, which represented the future materialized, as people could even travel with it to…