Macintosh vs. IBM

The IBM and Macintosh computers have been in competition with each other for
years, and each of them have their strong points. They both had their own ideas
about where they should go in the personal computer market. They also had many
developments, which propelled themselves over the other.

It all started when Thomas John Watson became president of Computing Tabulating
Recording in 1914, and in 1924 he renamed it to International Business Machines
Corporation. He eventually widened the company lines to include electronic
computers, which was extremely new in those days. In 1975 IBM introduced their
first personal computer (PC) which was called the Model 5100. It carried a
price tag of about $9,000 which caused it to be out of the main stream of
personal computers, even though their first computer did not get off to as big
as a start they had hoped it did not stop them from continuing on. Later on IBM
teamed up with Microsoft to create an operating system to run their new
computers, because their software division was not able to meet a deadline.
They also teamed up with Intel to supply its chips for the first IBM personal
computer. When the personal computer hit the market it was a major hit and IBM
became a strong power in electronic computers. Phoenix Technologies went
through published documentation to figure out the internal operating system
(BIOS) in the IBM. In turn, they designed a BIOS of their own which could be
used with IBM computers. It stood up in courts and now with a non IBM BIOS, the
clone was created. Many manufacturers jumped in and started making their own
IBM Compatible computers, and IBM eventually lost a big share in the desktop
computers.

While IBM was just getting started in the personal computer market, Apple was
also just getting on its feet. It was founded by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak
in 1976. They were both college drop outs, Steve Jobs out of Reed College in
Oregon and Steve Wozniak from the University of Colorado. They ended up in
Silicon Valley, which is located in northern California near San Francisco.
Wozniak was the person with the brains and Jobs was the one who put it all
together. For about $700 someone could buy a computer that they put together,
which was called the Apple I. They hired a multimillionaire, Armas Clifford
Markkula, a 33 year old as the chief executive in 1977. In the mean time
Wozniak was working at Hewlett Packard until Markkula encouraged him to quit his
job with them, and to focus his attention on Apple. Apple went public in 1977,
for about $25 a share. In 1977 the Apple II was introduced which set the
standard for many of the microcomputers to follow, including the IBM PC.

The Macintosh and IBM computer have been in competition ever since they put out
their first personal computers. In 1980, the personal computer world was
dominated by two types of computer systems. One was the Apple II, which had a
huge group of loyal users, and they also had a large group of people developing
software for the Apple II. The other system was the IBM-Compatible, which for
the most part all used the same software and plug in hardware. In 1983 Apple
sold over $1 billion in computers and hardware. Now Apple was trying to appeal
more to the business world so they designed the Lisa computer that was a
prototype for the Macintosh and it cost around $10,000. It featured a never
before seen graphical interface and the mouse, which are as common as any other
component on the computer today. IBM introduced a spreadsheet program called
Lotus 1-2-3, which caused anticipated sales of the Lisa computer to drop to
nearly half.

In order for Apple to compete with the IBM-Compatible they had to change some
things around. Jobs headed the development of the Macintosh, with the goal in
mind of a “computer for the rest of us.” He wanted it to be easily set up out
of the box and up in running in 15 minutes. The developers of the Macintosh
made it so that you could not upgrade it for they did not think that you needed
to open your computer. In 1984, they launched the Macintosh for $2,495. The
advertisements for it cost around $500,000 and more than $1.5 million to play it
on Super Bowl Sunday in 1984. They decided later that if they wanted to keep up
with IBM they would have to make the Macintosh cheaper and easier to upgrade in
order