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Music is Say Anything by Manda and the Marbles
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Today something a bit different, the story of a bunch of Apple products you may or may not have ever heard of.
iOS apps and the Apple TV were not Apple's first foray into a gaming platform
Back in 1995 Apple partnered with the Japanese company Bandai to create a CD-ROM based gaming and entertainment platform called the Pippin
Apple really wanted Pippin to become a platform for a variety of devices like gaming, telecommunication, video, etc.
It wanted Pippin to be an "open standard" that it would license to 3rd parties.
Apple worked with Bandi to develop the first version and Apple did the logic board design with Bandi providing the case, packaging, manufacturing, and distribution.
Originally just intended to be a CD-ROM gaming platform customer feedback suggested that consumer also wanted a way to connect to the internet, so GeoPort modem support was also included.
The inclusion of GeoPort required moving from a Motorola 68030 chip to the more powerful PowerPC 603 32-bit processor
66Mhz PowerPC 603 with 6MB RAM, upgradable to 16MB
VGA, S-video, and RCS composite video at 640x480 resolution
AppleJack ADB inputs (these look more USB than ADB)
The white Bandai Pippin ATMARK model went on sale in Japan for 64,800 yen and was packaged with a modem and 4 CD-ROM titles and one corded AppleJack (boomerang) game pad.
A black US version branded as @World went on sale in September of 1995 for USD $599.00
It had PCI expansion via an Apple X-PCI docking interface and cabinet
That allowed adding of floppy drives, SCSI devices, ethernet, etc.
Only one docking station accessory could be used at a time.
Had 2D and 3D Quickdraw support and Quicktime, but no MPEG codec.
OS was on the CD-ROM for each software release. Up to MacOS 7.5.2
Didn't use a traditional Finder it had "Pippin Launch"
A "tile" like interface and no folders.
There were a few other versions after the Bandai version
KatzMedia in Norway got a license to sell units in Europe and Canada
Their system was branded the KatzMedia KMP 2000
They planned two versions a basic system and one that added Internet access and had a built in 50-pin SCSI connector
They only made the higher end one and only to specific business customers as a set-top system mostly for delivering "Internet" shopping experiences or for hotel internet access systems
With competitors like Sega and Nintendo making lower cost gaming systems the Pippin never really took off.
Bandai only ever sold 42,000 units in both the US and Japan.
There were only ever 25 titles produced, but one was Super Marathon from Bungie.
When Steve Jobs returned in 1997 all clone efforts, including the Pippin, were killed off.
Ultimately DayStar Digital ended up with surplus Bandai Pippin inventory and sold it off to anyone they could get to buy it.
Apple introduced one of the first consumer digital cameras way back in 1994
The Apple QuickTake 100
Made by Kodak
Took 0.3-megapixel 640 x 480 images and there was no screen.
It could hold a whopping 8 digital images at their highest resolution or 32 at 320x240
Design looked a bit like Luke Sykwalker's space binoculars
Photos were transferred to the Mac via a serial cable
It sold for USD $700
There was also a QuickTake 150 model released in 1995 which added a close-up lens
The QuickTake 200, produced for Apple by FujiFilm, added features like a preview screen, focus and exposure controls and a design more like a traditional camera.
It also stored images on SmartMedia cards
This was another project Steve scrapped in 1997.
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Forgotten Apples: Part II
Apple was making a TV product long before the AppleTV, but it was not a set top box.
Apple made a version of the Macintosh that had a built-in NTSC TV tuner and could be connected to cable or antenna
Called the Apple Macintosh TV it was introduced in October of 1993
It was based on the Macintosh LC 500 all-in one case design and I believe was the first Mac to have a black case
Internally it matched up more with a Performa 520.
32 MHz 68030 processor, 5 MB of RAM, a 160 MB hard drive, and an integrated TV tuner.
Built in 14-inch color display at 640x480
Sold for USD $2,079.00
I think it was mostly marketed as a "dorm room" computer for students.
Had a remote control
You could press a button and switch to the TV signal, but you could also get TV in a PIP window.
Only 10,000 Apple Macintosh TV units were ever produced.
Back in 2004 Apple announced that it would be selling socks
But not for your feet, these would be socks for your iPod.
And yes, they looked like brightly colored tube socks and came in a pack of six for USD $29.00
One each in grey, green, purple, goldenrod, pink, and blue
They even had a little color matched tag on the cuff with the Apple logo.
Meant to house the full-sized white iPod
Alas, Apple removed the socks from their online store in 2012.
You may think that when Steve came back to Apple that was the end of Apple licensing forever, but you'd be wrong.
On January 8, 2004, Carly Fiorina announced the Apple iPod+HP at CES.
The original devices were a 20 and 40GB 4th-generation iPod
The devices were exactly the same except they had Apple and HP branding engraved on the back
They also had Windows centric how to and setup guides
HP also sold printable "tattoos" (skins) for USD$14.95 for a pack of 10.
HP was supposedly going to be allowed to create their own color, an "HP" blue version, but that never happened.
For Apple's part it was somewhat of a coup.
They got HP to pre-load iTunes and the iTunes Store onto all HP/Compaq computers and blocked Window's Media Player.
It also prohibited HP from selling a competitor to the iPod until August 2006.
HP also had not negotiated the right for new iPods. As Apple came out with new models they were left selling the old stuff
Eventually there were also iPod+HP mini's, iPod Photo, and Shuffle.
At it's best the iPod+HP only made up about 5 percent of iPod sales
In 2005 HP terminated the deal, but was still bound by the non-compete and to continue pre-installing iTunes until 2006.
Coincidentally, also in 2004, but later in October Apple released a U2 Edition on the 4th gen iPod (yes , the band)
It was Black with a Red click-wheel and had the bands signatures engraved on the back
It was a 20GB model and sold for USD $349
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Forgotten Apples: Part III
The Apple Collection
Many of us know that today the only place you can get Apple branded apparel, housewares, office supplies, etc. is at the Company Store in Cupertino, but in 1986 Apple brought out The Apple Collection
It was a catalog of clothing, accessories, and products all adorned with the rainbow Apple logo
The images are totally 80's with sweaters, up turned collars, sweat suits, and neon colors.
Logo cap and tennis visors, belts, kids clothes. Even a toy semi-truck and a wind surfboard (USD $11,000.00).
There was also an Apple Watch (analog), black with an Apple logo on the face and an Apple Phone, the "land-line" kind.
Long before the iPod Apple tried it's had at a different personal stereo technology. The CD player.
In 1993 they released the Apple PowerCD. The first "stand alone" Apple product that didn't need to be connected to a Mac, though you could connect to it or a TV.
It was an OEM design from Phillips rebranded with Apple's logo.
It came with a remote.
It was a CD player with battery power that could could function as a stand alone audio CD player
The design matched the look of the PowerBook series at the time because the unit could also connect via SCSI and serve a s a portable CD-ROM drive.
It supported Kodak photo CDs, data CDs and audio CDs.
The SCSI was on the "dock" which also functioned as a stand and contained the battery pack.
PowerCD could also be attached to AppleDesign Powered Speakers giving you a mini portable stereo.
The PowerCD was pricey though at USD $499.00 and failed to really click as a portable CD-ROM or CD player.
The PowerCD was discontinued in 1996
Not everything on my list is hardware.
CyberDog was Apple attempt at a Internet suite in 1996
Browsers like Netscape and Internet Explorer
While some web browsers had begin adding in other services like email, news readers, etc. not many were doing it.
Apple wanted CyberDog to integrate email, news reading, web browsing, and address book. It also offered drag and drop FTP file transfers.
It was built and based on another Apple technology called OpenDoc.
The power of OpenDoc was apps could be reused inside other apps.
So you could put a live CyberDog web page inside a text document or a presentation.
But OpenDoc was also set up to be a competitor to Microsoft's Office's Object Linking and Embedding (OLE) technology and Internet Explorer and we all know how that turned out.
Cyberdog was plagued by performance issues.
It never gained much support or adoption from users or Apple.
It languished and was discontinued in 1997 just about a year after it was introduced.