Apple is, without a doubt, one of the most famous companies in the world. Their products, from the iPhone to the iPad and more, have changed the way we use technology.
However, the company was not always the force of nature it is today. In fact, when Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak founded Apple, they had no idea just how successful it would be. Here are some interesting facts about the company that is a major leader of innovation today.
How The Company Got Its Name
Before it became a household name in the tech industry, the word "apple" was unlikely to be associated with electronics. However, the word has now become synonymous with quality and innovation thanks to its founder, Steve Jobs.
The company was called Apple because Steve Jobs liked fruit. Although there are many theories as to why the company has such a bizarre name, the truth is that Steve Jobs just liked the fruit and decided on the name after visiting an apple farm.
Steve Jobs Lost Out On Being Time's Man Of The Year
In 1982 Steve Jobs was considered by Time magazine as a candidate for the prestigious Man of the Year accolade. They even sent a reporter to interview Jobs for the story. However, in the end, Time decided to go with a "Machine of the Year" (the personal computer) instead of a "Man of the Year."
When Steve Jobs saw the magazine cover he was completely stunned to see a picture of a computer instead of him. He was so upset that he cried when he read the article, which he described as awful.
Apple Had Three Founders
Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs are noted as the co-founders of Apple but the company had a third co-founder, Ronald Wayne. Most people may not know about Wayne because of his relatively short tenure at the company.
Wayne sold his shares in the company just 12 days after it was founded for $800 in addition to a $1,500 payout. At that time, he owned 10 percent of the company and if he'd held on to his share, it would now be worth $60 billion. But when asked about the potential revenue he could have earned, Ronald Wayne says he has no regrets.
Bill Gates And Steve Jobs
Many have speculated about the long-standing rivalry between Bill Gates and Steve Jobs. However, the two were friends at one time. Gates created the software that was used in Apple II. Later, Jobs reached out to Gates to create a program for the Macintosh with a graphic interface.
Bill Gates was not impressed with the product and refused. Although they had a good professional relationship for a few years, it collapsed when Gates introduced Microsoft and was accused by Jobs of stealing his idea. They were rivals since.
Apple's Easter Egg
To generate some buzz for its products, Apple hid an Easter Egg in the first generation of the iPod. Programmers installed the popular game Brick into the device for users to find. The only way to access the game was to go to the About menu and hold the select button for 5 seconds.
This would open up the game for users to enjoy. In later versions of the iPod, the game was added to the 'Extra' feature on the menu. The game was first developed by Jobs and Wozniack when they worked for Atari.
When the iPhone was under development at Apple, there were many precautions taken to ensure that details about the product were not leaked to the public. Since different teams worked on various aspects of the project, they had no idea what the end product would be like.
The software developers never saw the hardware and few people other than Jobs knew what the finished product would look like. To people outside the project, it was simply referred to as M68 and were to keep an eye out for anyone who may be extra inquisitive about project details.
Steve Jobs' Uniform
When we see any picture of Steve Jobs, the first thing we notice is the iconic black turtleneck that the CEO claimed was his uniform. In fact, he is said to have more than 100 of them in his closet.
While many considered this a fashion statement, this is not entirely true. Jobs wanted Apple to have its own uniform which was inspired by the corporate culture of Sony in Japan. He asked the designer to create similar turtlenecks for Apple but it turned out not to be a hit among employees. Jobs still had the turtlenecks made and received a lifetime of supply of them.
Apple made a huge impact in the portable music space with the iPod Nano and the Shuffle. Portable music devices, previously thought of as clunky and dysfunctional, now had an appeal that was trademarked with Apple's innovation and minimal product design.
However, after the iPhone was introduced, demand for iPods declined significantly as people used the music apps on their phones instead. Sales from the iPod are so inconsequential that Apple no longer reports these earnings on its financial statements.
Smoking Near An Apple Store
According to Apple's warranty guidelines, if your product is contaminated in any way, it voids the warranty clause. This also includes smoking near an Apple store. If you purchased Apple Care with your Apple product, Apple’s staff can refuse to fix your product due to the danger of second-hand smoke.
When a customer filed a complaint about this, Jobs stood by his employees, claiming that tobacco was on the list of hazardous substances by OSHA and staff were not obligated to fix smoker’s products.
Apple prides itself on being a leader of innovation so it comes as no surprise that they wanted their slogan to resonate with this idea. When Apple launched its first commercial in 1997, it used the slogan "Here's to the Crazy Ones, Think Different."
This acknowledged the visionaries in every field who dared to be different and make a change. It was also referenced by IBM’s ThinkPad, which ran with the slogan "Think IBM." This slogan changed the perception of Apple from just another tech company to a pioneer in the field.
Secrecy is incredibly important to Apple, especially during the development of a new product. The company is known for taking extreme measures to ensure that no information is leaked with the help of codenames and secret meetings.
In some cases, Apple also employees carpenters to build enclosures around employees' desks. This includes walls, security doors, and even frosted glass. The carpenters are usually quick when creating these lockdown rooms in order to allow employees to go about their daily tasks as usual.
Jobs Was Fired And Re-Hired
Although Steve Jobs was a visionary, many people said he was incredibly difficult to work with. When a battle erupted between Jobs and then-CEO John Sculley, Jobs was either fired or made the decision to leave the company (depending on who you ask).
After Jobs' departure, he founded the company NeXt while Apple went through three CEOs including Michael Spindler and Gil Amelio. Amelio made the decision to acquire NeXt and bring Jobs back into the company, where he was eventually named the permanent CEO.
Isaac Newton Logo
Apple's logo, the bitten apple, that is synonymous with the brand’s name was not always the company’s logo. The first logo was designed by Ronald Wayne, the third founder of Apple. It featured Sir Isaac Newton sitting against a tree with an apple about to fall on him.
This scenic picture was framed with a ribbon that was inscribed with "Apple Computer Co." There was also a quote by Woodsworth printed on the side of the logo. The picture was later scrapped because it was too detailed and cerebral.
Secret Packaging HQ
Apple likes to make sure everything about their product is foolproof and perfect, especially when it comes to the product packaging. Opening an Apple product has a premium feel to it and we have the designers to thank for this.
Designers at Apple spend hours iterating the product packaging and spend hours opening boxes to find the perfect fit. There is a secret packaging room in Apple's headquarters where test arrows and tapes help identify the optimal way to open the box.
Steve Wozniack Is An Employee
In a recent interview, Steve Wozniack revealed an interesting fact about himself. He said that he is the only person who has been on the company's payroll since it was founded and on paper, he is still an employee of the company.
It was also said that he reported directly to Steve Jobs who was the only person who could legally fire him. Jobs passed away in 2011, meaning that Steve Wozniack can never be fired by Apple. He earns a stipend of $120,000 a year.
Apple Was Founded On April Fool's Day
Many consider April 1st, 1976, the day that Apple was founded but Steve Wozniack claims otherwise. This was the date when the partnership in the company was official but the papers for the corporation were filed days later.
The corporation paperwork no longer listed Ronald Wayne as a founder since he backed out before this. Since not much changed between the partnership and corporation date except the legal title and removal of Wayne as a founder, Apple's employees still celebrate this as the company’s founding day.
Apple III Failure
Apple is a pioneer in the field of technology but even this company has had its setbacks. In 1980, the company created the Apple III computer which almost wiped out the success of its predecessors. The product had numerous flaws.
The computer had no air vents which made it overheat, and the logic board was messed up and the chips melted while the system was running. Every Apple III computer had to be fixed and Steve Wozniack said that it had a 100 percent failure rate.
Tim Cook Eats With Employees
Before he became CEO, Tim Cook was the type of person who would go out of his way to avoid his fellow co-workers at all costs. So much so, that he would eat alone or go to another gym to work out.
But when he became CEO this changed and Cook made it a point to eat with random employees. It's unclear whether this was his way of becoming more approachable of whether he truly enjoyed the occasional chat. This was in contrast to Steve Jobs, who usually ate with his design head, Jonathan Ive.
Apple Ships Products By Air
It is common knowledge that it's cheaper to ship products by sea instead of air but as a general rule, Apple only ships its products by air. While this does not seem cost-effective, it is actually cheaper for Apple when you include time as a factor.
It takes roughly 30 days for products to reach the destination by sea but by air, it only takes 15 hours. The company also argues that it would only take a few hours in those 30 days for a ship to sink, leading to large losses.
Competition Between Apple And Samsung?
Industry experts believed that there would be fierce competition between Apple and Samsung, given the similarities in the products they manufacture. Apple has made waves with the App Store while Samsung has the PlayStore.
However, this is far from the truth because Apple and Samsung actually have a business relationship. The retina display on the iPhone and the memory chips used in the iPhone 6 are actually manufactured by Samsung, which also supplies Apple with screens and semiconductors.