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Apple Inc. is an American multinational technology company headquartered in Cupertino, California, that designs, develops, and sells consumer electronics, computer software, and online services. It is considered one of the Big Four technology companies, alongside Amazon, Google, and Microsoft.

The company's hardware products include the iPhone smartphone, the iPad tablet computer, the Mac personal computer, the iPod portable media player, the Apple Watch smartwatch, the Apple TV digital media player, the AirPods wireless earbuds and the HomePod smart speaker. Apple's software includes the macOS, iOS, iPadOS, watchOS, and tvOS operating systems, the iTunes media player, the Safari web browser, the Shazam acoustic fingerprint utility, and the iLife and iWork creativity and productivity suites, as well as professional applications like Final Cut Pro, Logic Pro, and Xcode. Its online services include the iTunes Store, the iOS App Store, Mac App Store, Apple Music, Apple TV+, iMessage, and iCloud. Other services include Apple Store, Genius Bar, AppleCare, Apple Pay, Apple Pay Cash, and Apple Card.

Apple was founded by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne in April 1976 to develop and sell Wozniak's Apple I personal computer, though Wayne sold his share back within 12 days. It was incorporated as Apple Computer, Inc., in January 1977, and sales of its computers, including the Apple II, grew quickly. Within a few years, Jobs and Wozniak had hired a staff of computer designers and had a production line. Apple went public in 1980 to instant financial success. Over the next few years, Apple shipped new computers featuring innovative graphical user interfaces, such as the original Macintosh in 1984, and Apple's marketing advertisements for its products received widespread critical acclaim. However, the high price of its products and limited application library caused problems, as did power struggles between executives. In 1985, Wozniak departed Apple amicably and remained an honorary employee, while Jobs and others resigned to found NeXT.

As the market for personal computers expanded and evolved through the 1990s, Apple lost market share to the lower-priced duopoly of Microsoft Windows on Intel PC clones. The board recruited CEO Gil Amelio to what would be a 500-day charge for him to rehabilitate the financially troubled company—reshaping it with layoffs, executive restructuring, and product focus. In 1997, he led Apple to buy NeXT, solving the desperately failed operating system strategy and bringing Jobs back. Jobs pensively regained leadership status, becoming CEO in 2000. Apple swiftly returned to profitability under the revitalizing Think different campaign, as he rebuilt Apple's status by launching the iMac in 1998, opening the retail chain of Apple Stores in 2001, and acquiring numerous companies to broaden the software portfolio. In January 2007, Jobs renamed the company Apple Inc., reflecting its shifted focus toward consumer electronics, and launched the iPhone to great critical acclaim and financial success. In August 2011, Jobs resigned as CEO due to health complications, and Tim Cook became the new CEO. Two months later, Jobs died, marking the end of an era for the company. In June 2019, Jony Ive, Apple's CDO, left the company to start his own firm, but stated he would work with Apple as its primary client.

Apple is well known for its size and revenues. Its worldwide annual revenue totaled $265 billion for the 2018 fiscal year. Apple is the world's largest technology company by revenue and one of the world's most valuable companies. It is also the world's third-largest mobile phone manufacturer after Samsung and Huawei. In August 2018, Apple became the first public U.S. company to be valued at over $1 trillion. The company employs 123,000 full-time employees and maintains 504 retail stores in 24 countries as of 2018. It operates the iTunes Store, which is the world's largest music retailer. As of January 2018, more than 1.3 billion Apple products are actively in use worldwide. The company also has a high level of brand loyalty and is ranked as the world's most valuable brand. However, Apple receives significant criticism regarding the labor practices of its contractors, its environmental practices and unethical business practices, including anti-competitive behavior, as well as the origins of source materials.

History

1976–1984: Founding and incorporation

Apple Computer Company was founded on April 1, 1976, by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne as a business partnership. The company's first product is the Apple I, a computer designed and hand-built entirely by Wozniak, and first shown to the public at the Homebrew Computer Club. Apple I was sold as a motherboard (with CPU, RAM, and basic textual-video chips)—a base kit concept which would now not be marketed as a complete personal computer. The Apple I went on sale in July 1976 and was market-priced at $666.66 ($2,995 in 2019 dollars, adjusted for inflation).:180 Wozniak later said he had no idea about the relation between the number and the mark of the beast, and that he came up with the price because he liked "repeating digits".

Apple Computer, Inc. was incorporated on January 3, 1977, without Wayne, who had left and sold his share of the company back to Jobs and Wozniak for $800 only twelve days after having co-founded Apple. Multimillionaire Mike Markkula provided essential business expertise and funding of $250,000 during the incorporation of Apple. During the first five years of operations, revenues grew exponentially, doubling about every four months. Between September 1977 and September 1980, yearly sales grew from $775,000 to $118 million, an average annual growth rate of 533%.

The Apple II, also invented by Wozniak, was introduced on April 16, 1977, at the first West Coast Computer Faire. It differs from its major rivals, the TRS-80 and Commodore PET, because of its character cell-based color graphics and open architecture. While early Apple II models use ordinary cassette tapes as storage devices, they were superseded by the introduction of a ​5 1⁄4-inch floppy disk drive and interface called the Disk II in 1978. The Apple II was chosen to be the desktop platform for the first "killer application" of the business world: VisiCalc, a spreadsheet program released in 1979. VisiCalc created a business market for the Apple II and gave home users an additional reason to buy an Apple II: compatibility with the office. Before VisiCalc, Apple had been a distant third place competitor to Commodore and Tandy.

By the end of the 1970s, Apple had a staff of computer designers and a production line. The company introduced the Apple III in May 1980 in an attempt to compete with IBM in the business and corporate computing market. Jobs and several Apple employees, including human–computer interface expert Jef Raskin, visited Xerox PARC in December 1979 to see a demonstration of the Xerox Alto. Xerox granted Apple engineers three days of access to the PARC facilities in return for the option to buy 100,000 shares (5.6 million split-adjusted shares as of March 30, 2019) of Apple at the pre-IPO price of $10 a share.

Jobs was immediately convinced that all future computers would use a graphical user interface (GUI), and development of a GUI began for the Apple Lisa. In 1982, however, he was pushed from the Lisa team due to infighting. Jobs then took over Wozniak's and Raskin's low-cost-computer project, the Macintosh, and redefined it as a graphical system cheaper and faster than Lisa. In 1983, Lisa became the first personal computer sold to the public with a GUI, but was a commercial failure due to its high price and limited software titles, so in 1985 it would be repurposed as the high end Macintosh and discontinued in its second year.

On December 12, 1980, Apple (ticker symbol "AAPL") went public selling 4.6 million shares at $22 per share ($.39 per share when adjusting for stock splits as of March 30, 2019), generating over $100 million, which was more capital than any IPO since Ford Motor Company in 1956. By the end of the day, the stock rose to $29 per share and 300 millionaires were created. Apple's market cap was $1.778 billion at the end of its first day of trading.

1984–1991: Success with Macintosh

In 1984, Apple launched the Macintosh, the first personal computer to be sold without a programming language. Its debut was signified by "1984", a $1.5 million television advertisement directed by Ridley Scott that aired during the third quarter of Super Bowl XVIII on January 22, 1984. This is now hailed as a watershed event for Apple's success and was called a "masterpiece" by CNN and one of the greatest TV advertisements of all time by TV Guide.

Macintosh sales were initially good, but began to taper off dramatically after the first three months due to its high price, slow speed, and limited range of available software.:195 In early 1985, this sales slump triggered a power struggle between Steve Jobs and CEO John Sculley, who had been hired two years earlier by Jobs using the famous line, "Do you want to sell sugar water for the rest of your life or come with me and change the world?" Sculley decided to remove Jobs as the general manager of the Macintosh division, and gained unanimous support from the Apple board of directors.

The board of directors instructed Sculley to contain Jobs and his ability to launch expensive forays into untested products. Rather than submit to Sculley's direction, Jobs attempted to oust him from his leadership role at Apple. Informed by Jean-Louis Gassée, Sculley found out that Jobs had been attempting to organize a coup and called an emergency executive meeting at which Apple's executive staff sided with Sculley and stripped Jobs of all operational duties. Jobs resigned from Apple in September 1985 and took a number of Apple employees with him to found NeXT Inc. Wozniak had also quit his active employment at Apple earlier in 1985 to pursue other ventures, expressing his frustration with Apple's treatment of the Apple II division and stating that the company had "been going in the wrong direction for the last five years". Despite Wozniak's grievances, he left the company amicably and both Jobs and Wozniak remained Apple shareholders. Wozniak continues to represent the company at events or in interviews, receiving a stipend estimated to be $120,000 per year for this role.

The outlook on Macintosh improved with the introduction of the LaserWriter, the first reasonably priced PostScript laser printer, and PageMaker, an early desktop publishing application released in July 1985. It has been suggested that the combination of Macintosh, LaserWriter, and PageMaker was responsible for the creation of the desktop publishing market.

After the departures of Jobs and Wozniak, the Macintosh product line underwent a steady change of focus to higher price points, the so-called "high-right policy" named for the position on a chart of price vs. profits. Jobs had argued the company should produce products aimed at the consumer market and aimed for a $1,000 price for the Macintosh, which they were unable to meet. Newer models selling at higher price points offered higher profit margin, and appeared to have no effect on total sales as power users snapped up every increase in power. Although some worried about pricing themselves out of the market, the high-right policy was in full force by the mid-1980s, notably due to Jean-Louis Gassée's mantra of "fifty-five or die", referring to the 55% profit margins of the Macintosh II.:79–80 Selling Macintosh at such high profit margins was only possible because of its dominant position in the desktop publishing market.

This policy began to backfire in the last years of the decade as new desktop publishing programs appeared on PC clones that offered some or much of the same functionality of the Macintosh but at far lower price points. The company lost its monopoly in this market and had already estranged many of its original consumer customer base who could no longer afford their high-priced products. The Christmas season of 1989 is the first in the company's history to have declining sales, which led to a 20% drop in Apple's stock price.:117–129 During this period, the relationship between Sculley and Gassée deteriorated, leading Sculley to effectively demote Gassée in January 1990 by appointing Michael Spindler as the chief operating officer. Gassée left the company later that year. In October 1990, Apple introduced three lower-cost models, the Macintosh Classic, Macintosh LC, and Macintosh IIsi, all of which saw significant sales due to pent-up demand.

In 1991, Apple introduced the PowerBook, replacing the "luggable" Macintosh Portable with a design that set the current shape for almost all modern laptops. The same year, Apple introduced System 7, a major upgrade to the operating system which added color to the interface and introduced new networking capabilities. It remained the architectural basis for the Classic Mac OS. The success of the PowerBook and other products brought increasing revenue. For some time, Apple was doing incredibly well, introducing fresh new products and generating increasing profits in the process. The magazine MacAddict named the period between 1989 and 1991 as the "first golden age" of the Macintosh.

Apple believed the Apple II series was too expensive to produce and took away sales from the low-end Macintosh. In October 1990, Apple released the Macintosh LC, and began efforts to promote that computer by advising developer technical support staff to recommend developing applications for Macintosh rather than Apple II, and authorizing salespersons to direct consumers towards Macintosh and away from Apple II. The Apple IIe was discontinued in 1993.

After the departures of Jobs and Wozniak, the Macintosh product line underwent a steady change of focus to higher price points, the so-called "high-right policy" named for the position on a chart of price vs. profits. Jobs had argued the company should produce products aimed at the consumer market and aimed for a $1,000 price for the Macintosh, which they were unable to meet. Newer models selling at higher price points offered higher profit margin, and appeared to have no effect on total sales as power users snapped up every increase in power. Although some worried about pricing themselves out of the market, the high-right policy was in full force by the mid-1980s, notably due to Jean-Louis Gassée's mantra of "fifty-five or die", referring to the 55% profit margins of the Macintosh II.:79–80 Selling Macintosh at such high profit margins was only possible because of its dominant position in the desktop publishing market.

This policy began to backfire in the last years of the decade as new desktop publishing programs appeared on PC clones that offered some or much of the same functionality of the Macintosh but at far lower price points. The company lost its monopoly in this market and had already estranged many of its original consumer customer base who could no longer afford their high-priced products. The Christmas season of 1989 is the first in the company's history to have declining sales, which led to a 20% drop in Apple's stock price.:117–129 During this period, the relationship between Sculley and Gassée deteriorated, leading Sculley to effectively demote Gassée in January 1990 by appointing Michael Spindler as the chief operating officer. Gassée left the company later that year. In October 1990, Apple introduced three lower-cost models, the Macintosh Classic, Macintosh LC, and Macintosh IIsi, all of which saw significant sales due to pent-up demand.

In 1991, Apple introduced the PowerBook, replacing the "luggable" Macintosh Portable with a design that set the current shape for almost all modern laptops. The same year, Apple introduced System 7, a major upgrade to the operating system which added color to the interface and introduced new networking capabilities. It remained the architectural basis for the Classic Mac OS. The success of the PowerBook and other products brought increasing revenue. For some time, Apple was doing incredibly well, introducing fresh new products and generating increasing profits in the process. The magazine MacAddict named the period between 1989 and 1991 as the "first golden age" of the Macintosh.

Apple believed the Apple II series was too expensive to produce and took away sales from the low-end Macintosh. In October 1990, Apple released the Macintosh LC, and began efforts to promote that computer by advising developer technical support staff to recommend developing applications for Macintosh rather than Apple II, and authorizing salespersons to direct consumers towards Macintosh and away from Apple II. The Apple IIe was discontinued in 1993.

1991–1997: Decline and restructuring

The success of Apple's lower-cost consumer models, especially the LC, also led to the cannibalization of their higher-priced machines. To address this, management introduced several new brands, selling largely identical machines at different price points aimed at different markets. These were the high-end Quadra, the mid-range Centris line, and the consumer-marketed Performa series. This led to significant market confusion, as customers did not understand the difference between models.

Apple also experimented with a number of other unsuccessful consumer targeted products during the 1990s, including digital cameras, portable CD audio players, speakers, video consoles, the eWorld online service, and TV appliances. Enormous resources were also invested in the problem-plagued Newton division based on John Sculley's unrealistic market forecasts. Ultimately, none of these products helped and Apple's market share and stock prices continued to slide.

Throughout this period, Microsoft continued to gain market share with Windows by focusing on delivering software to cheap commodity personal computers, while Apple was delivering a richly engineered but expensive experience. Apple relied on high profit margins and never developed a clear response; instead, they sued Microsoft for using a GUI similar to the Apple Lisa in Apple Computer, Inc. v. Microsoft Corp. The lawsuit dragged on for years before it was finally dismissed. At this time, a series of major product flops and missed deadlines sullied Apple's reputation, and Sculley was replaced as CEO by Michael Spindler.

By the late 1980s, Apple was developing alternative platforms to System 6, such as A/UX and Pink. The System 6 platform itself was outdated because it was not originally built for multitasking. By the 1990s, Apple was facing competition from OS/2 and UNIX vendors such as Sun Microsystems. System 6 and 7 would need to be replaced by a new platform or reworked to run on modern hardware.

In 1994, Apple, IBM, and Motorola formed the AIM alliance with the goal of creating a new computing platform (the PowerPC Reference Platform), which would use IBM and Motorola hardware coupled with Apple software. The AIM alliance hoped that PReP's performance and Apple's software would leave the PC far behind and thus counter Microsoft's monopoly. The same year, Apple introduced the Power Macintosh, the first of many Apple computers to use Motorola's PowerPC processor.

In 1996, Spindler was replaced by Gil Amelio as CEO. Hired for his reputation as a corporate rehabilitator, Amelio made deep changes, including extensive layoffs and cost-cutting. After numerous failed attempts to modernize Mac OS, first with the Pink project from 1988 and later with Copland from 1994, Apple in 1997 purchased NeXT for its NeXTSTEP operating system and to bring Steve Jobs back. Apple was only weeks away from bankruptcy when Jobs returned.

1997–2007: Return to profitability

The NeXT acquisition was finalized on February 9, 1997, bringing Jobs back to Apple as an advisor. On July 9, 1997, Amelio was ousted by the board of directors after overseeing a three-year record-low stock price and crippling financial losses. Jobs acted as the interim CEO and began restructuring the company's product line; it was during this period that he identified the design talent of Jonathan Ive, and the pair worked collaboratively to rebuild Apple's status.

At the August 1997 Macworld Expo in Boston, Jobs announced that Apple would join Microsoft to release new versions of Microsoft Office for the Macintosh, and that Microsoft had made a $150 million investment in non-voting Apple stock. On November 10, 1997, Apple introduced the Apple Store website, which was tied to a new build-to-order manufacturing strategy.

On August 15, 1998, Apple introduced a new all-in-one computer reminiscent of the Macintosh 128K: the iMac. The iMac design team was led by Ive, who would later design the iPod and the iPhone. The iMac featured modern technology and a unique design, and sold almost 800,000 units in its first five months.

During this period, Apple completed numerous acquisitions to create a portfolio of digital production software for both professionals and consumers. In 1998, Apple purchased Macromedia's Key Grip software project, signaling an expansion into the digital video editing market. The sale was an outcome of Macromedia's decision to solely focus on web development software. The product, still unfinished at the time of the sale, was renamed "Final Cut Pro" when it was launched on the retail market in April 1999. The development of Key Grip also led to Apple's release of the consumer video-editing product iMovie in October 1999. Next, Apple successfully acquired the German company Astarte, which had developed DVD authoring technology, as well as Astarte's corresponding products and engineering team in April 2000. Astarte's digital tool DVDirector was subsequently transformed into the professional-oriented DVD Studio Pro software product. Apple then employed the same technology to create iDVD for the consumer market. In July 2001, Apple acquired Spruce Technologies, a PC DVD authoring platform, to incorporate their technology into Apple's expanding portfolio of digital video projects.

SoundJam MP, released by Casady & Greene in 1998, was renamed "iTunes" when Apple purchased it in 2000. The primary developers of the MP3 player and music library software moved to Apple as part of the acquisition, and simplified SoundJam's user interface, added the ability to burn CDs, and removed its recording feature and skin support. SoundJam was Apple's second choice for the core of Apple's music software project, originally codenamed iMusic, behind Panic's Audion. Apple was not able to set up a meeting with Panic in time to be fully considered as the latter was in the middle of similar negotiations with AOL.

In 2002, Apple purchased Nothing Real for their advanced digital compositing application Shake, as well as Emagic for the music productivity application Logic. The purchase of Emagic made Apple the first computer manufacturer to own a music software company. The acquisition was followed by the development of Apple's consumer-level GarageBand application. The release of iPhoto in the same year completed the iLife suite.

Mac OS X, based on NeXT's NeXTSTEP, OPENSTEPand BSD Unix, was released on March 24, 2001, after several years of development. Aimed at consumers and professionals alike, Mac OS X aimed to combine the stability, reliability, and security of Unix with the ease of use afforded by an overhauled user interface. To aid users in migrating from Mac OS 9, the new operating system allowed the use of OS 9 applications within Mac OS X via the Classic Environment.

On May 19, 2001, Apple opened its first official eponymous retail stores in Virginia and California. On October 23 of the same year, Apple debuted the iPod portable digital audio player. The product, which was first sold on November 10, 2001, was phenomenally successful with over 100 million units sold within six years. In 2003, Apple's iTunes Store was introduced. The service offered online music downloads for $0.99 a song and integration with the iPod. The iTunes Store quickly became the market leader in online music services, with over five billion downloads by June 19, 2008. Two years later, the iTunes Store was the world's largest music retailer.

Intel transition and financial stability

At the Worldwide Developers Conference keynote address on June 6, 2005, Jobs announced that Apple would begin producing Intel-based Mac computers in 2006. On January 10, 2006, the new MacBook Pro and iMac became the first Apple computers to use Intel's Core Duo CPU. By August 7, 2006, Apple made the transition to Intel chips for the entire Mac product line—over one year sooner than announced. The Power Mac, iBook, and PowerBook brands were retired during the transition; the Mac Pro, MacBook, and MacBook Pro became their respective successors. On April 29, 2009, The Wall Street Journal reported that Apple was building its own team of engineers to design microchips. Apple also introduced Boot Camp in 2006 to help users install Windows XP or Windows Vista on their Intel Macs alongside Mac OS X.

Apple's success during this period was evident in its stock price. Between early 2003 and 2006, the price of Apple's stock increased more than tenfold, from around $6 per share (split-adjusted) to over $80. When Apple surpassed Dell's market cap in January 2006, Jobs sent an email to Apple employees saying Dell's CEO Michael Dell should eat his words. Nine years prior, Dell had said that if he ran Apple he would "shut it down and give the money back to the shareholders".

Although Apple's market share in computers had grown, it remained far behind its competitor Microsoft Windows, accounting for about 8% of desktops and laptops in the US.

Since 2001, Apple's design team has progressively abandoned the use of translucent colored plastics first used in the iMac G3. This design change began with the titanium-made PowerBook and was followed by the iBook's white polycarbonate structure and the flat-panel iMac.

2007–2011: Success with mobile devices

During his keynote speech at the Macworld Expo on January 9, 2007, Jobs announced that Apple Computer, Inc. would thereafter be known as "Apple Inc.", because the company had shifted its emphasis from computers to consumer electronics. This event also saw the announcement of the iPhone and the Apple TV. The company sold 270,000 iPhone units during the first 30 hours of sales, and the device was called "a game changer for the industry". Apple would achieve widespread success with its iPhone, iPod Touch, and iPad products, which introduced innovations in mobile phones, portable music players, and personal computers respectively. Furthermore, by early 2007, 800,000 Final Cut Pro users were registered.

In an article posted on Apple's website on February 6, 2007, Jobs wrote that Apple would be willing to sell music on the iTunes Store without digital rights management (DRM), thereby allowing tracks to be played on third-party players, if record labels would agree to drop the technology. On April 2, 2007, Apple and EMI jointly announced the removal of DRM technology from EMI's catalog in the iTunes Store, effective in May 2007. Other record labels eventually followed suit and Apple published a press release in January 2009 to announce that all songs on the iTunes Store are available without their FairPlay DRM.

In July 2008, Apple launched the App Store to sell third-party applications for the iPhone and iPod Touch. Within a month, the store sold 60 million applications and registered an average daily revenue of $1 million, with Jobs speculating in August 2008 that the App Store could become a billion-dollar business for Apple. By October 2008, Apple was the third-largest mobile handset supplier in the world due to the popularity of the iPhone.

On December 16, 2008, Apple announced that 2009 would be the last year the corporation would attend the Macworld Expo, after more than 20 years of attendance, and that senior vice president of Worldwide Product Marketing Phil Schiller would deliver the 2009 keynote address in lieu of the expected Jobs. The official press release explained that Apple was "scaling back" on trade shows in general, including Macworld Tokyo and the Apple Expo in Paris, France, primarily because the enormous successes of the Apple Retail Stores and website had rendered trade shows a minor promotional channel.

On January 14, 2009, Jobs announced in an internal memo that he would be taking a six-month medical leave of absence from Apple until the end of June 2009 and would spend the time focusing on his health. In the email, Jobs stated that "the curiosity over my personal health continues to be a distraction not only for me and my family, but everyone else at Apple as well", and explained that the break would allow the company "to focus on delivering extraordinary products". Though Jobs was absent, Apple recorded its best non-holiday quarter (Q1 FY 2009) during the recession with revenue of $8.16 billion and profit of $1.21 billion.

After years of speculation and multiple rumored "leaks", Apple unveiled a large screen, tablet-like media device known as the iPad on January 27, 2010. The iPad ran the same touch-based operating system as the iPhone, and all iPhone apps were compatible with the iPad. This gave the iPad a large app catalog on launch, though having very little development time before the release. Later that year on April 3, 2010, the iPad was launched in the US. It sold more than 300,000 units on its first day, and 500,000 by the end of the first week. In May of the same year, Apple's market cap exceeded that of competitor Microsoft for the first time since 1989.

In June 2010, Apple released the iPhone 4, which introduced video calling, multitasking, and a new uninsulated stainless steel design that acted as the phone's antenna. Later that year, Apple again refreshed its iPod line of MP3 players by introducing a multi-touch iPod Nano, an iPod Touch with FaceTime, and an iPod Shuffle that brought back the clickwheel buttons of earlier generations. It also introduced the smaller, cheaper second generation Apple TV which allowed renting of movies and shows.

In October 2010, Apple shares hit an all-time high, eclipsing $300 (~$43 split adjusted). Later that month, Apple updated the MacBook Air laptop, iLife suite of applications, and unveiled Mac OS X Lion, the last version with the name Mac OS X.

On January 6, 2011, the company opened its Mac App Store, a digital software distribution platform similar to the iOS App Store.

On January 17, 2011, Jobs announced in an internal Apple memo that he would take another medical leave of absence for an indefinite period to allow him to focus on his health. Chief Operating Officer Tim Cook assumed Jobs's day-to-day operations at Apple, although Jobs would still remain "involved in major strategic decisions". Apple became the most valuable consumer-facing brand in the world. In June 2011, Jobs surprisingly took the stage and unveiled iCloud, an online storage and syncing service for music, photos, files, and software which replaced MobileMe, Apple's previous attempt at content syncing. This would be the last product launch Jobs would attend before his death.

Alongside peer entities such as Atari and Cisco Systems, Apple was featured in the documentary Something Ventured, which premiered in 2011 and explored the three-decade era that led to the establishment and dominance of Silicon Valley. It has been argued that Apple has achieved such efficiency in its supply chain that the company operates as a monopsony (one buyer with many sellers) and can dictate terms to its suppliers. In July 2011, due to the American debt-ceiling crisis, Apple's financial reserves were briefly larger than those of the U.S. Government.

On August 24, 2011, Jobs resigned his position as CEO of Apple. He was replaced by Cook and Jobs became Apple's chairman. Apple did not have a chairman at the time and instead had two co-lead directors, Andrea Jung and Arthur D. Levinson, who continued with those titles until Levinson replaced Jobs as chairman of the board in November after Jobs' death.

2011–present: Post–Steve Jobs era; Tim Cook leadership

On October 5, 2011, Steve Jobs died, marking the end of an era for Apple. The first major product announcement by Apple following Jobs's passing occurred on January 19, 2012, when Apple's Phil Schiller introduced iBooks Textbooks for iOS and iBook Author for Mac OS X in New York City. Jobs had stated in his biography that he wanted to reinvent the textbook industry and education.

From 2011 to 2012, Apple released the iPhone 4S and iPhone 5, which featured improved cameras, an intelligent software assistant named Siri, and cloud-synced data with iCloud; the third and fourth generation iPads, which featured Retina displays; and the iPad Mini, which featured a 7.9-inch screen in contrast to the iPad's 9.7-inch screen. These launches were successful, with the iPhone 5 (released September 21, 2012) becoming Apple's biggest iPhone launch with over two million pre-orders and sales of three million iPads in three days following the launch of the iPad Mini and fourth generation iPad (released November 3, 2012). Apple also released a third-generation 13-inch MacBook Pro with a Retina display and new iMac and Mac Mini computers.

On August 20, 2012, Apple's rising stock price increased the company's market capitalization to a world-record $624 billion. This beat the non-inflation-adjusted record for market capitalization set by Microsoft in 1999. On August 24, 2012, a US jury ruled that Samsung should pay Apple $1.05 billion (£665m) in damages in an intellectual property lawsuit. Samsung appealed the damages award, which the Court reduced by $450 million. The Court further granted Samsung's request for a new trial. On November 10, 2012, Apple confirmed a global settlement that would dismiss all lawsuits between Apple and HTC up to that date, in favor of a ten-year license agreement for current and future patents between the two companies. It is predicted that Apple will make $280 million a year from this deal with HTC.

A previously confidential email written by Jobs a year before his death was presented during the proceedings of the Apple Inc. v. Samsung Electronics Co. lawsuits and became publicly available in early April 2014. With a subject line that reads "Top 100 – A," the email was sent only to the company's 100 most senior employees and outlines Jobs's vision of Apple Inc.'s future under 10 subheadings. Notably, Jobs declares a "Holy War with Google" for 2011 and schedules a "new campus" for 2015.

In March 2013, Apple filed a patent for an augmented reality (AR) system that can identify objects in a live video stream and present information corresponding to these objects through a computer-generated information layer overlaid on top of the real-world image. The company also made several high-profile hiring decisions in 2013. On July 2, 2013, Apple recruited Paul Deneve, Belgian President and CEO of Yves Saint Laurent as a vice president reporting directly to Tim Cook. A mid-October 2013 announcement revealed that Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts will commence as a senior vice president at Apple in mid-2014. Ahrendts oversaw Burberry's digital strategy for almost eight years and, during her tenure, sales increased to about $3.2 billion and shares gained more than threefold. She resigned from Apple in 2019.

Alongside Google vice-president Vint Cerf and AT&T CEO Randall Stephenson, Cook attended a closed-door summit held by President Obama on August 8, 2013, in regard to government surveillance and the Internet in the wake of the Edward Snowden NSA incident. On February 4, 2014, Cook met with Abdullah Gül, the President of Turkey, in Ankara to discuss the company's involvement in the Fatih project.

In the first quarter of 2014, Apple reported sales of 51 million iPhones and 26 million iPads, becoming all-time quarterly sales records. It also experienced a significant year-over-year increase in Mac sales. This was contrasted with a significant drop in iPod sales. In May 2014, the company confirmed its intent to acquire Dr. Dre and Jimmy Iovine's audio company Beats Electronics—producer of the "Beats by Dr. Dre" line of headphones and speaker products, and operator of the music streaming service Beats Music—for $3 billion, and to sell their products through Apple's retail outlets and resellers. Iovine believed that Beats had always "belonged" with Apple, as the company modeled itself after Apple's "unmatched ability to marry culture and technology." The acquisition was the largest purchase in Apple's history.

Apple was at the top of Interbrand's annual Best Global Brands report for six consecutive years; 2013, 2014, 2015, 2016, 2017, and 2018 with a valuation of $214.48 billion.

In January 2016, it was announced that one billion Apple devices were in active use worldwide.

On May 12, 2016, Apple Inc., invested $1 billion in DiDi, a Chinese transportation network company. The Information reported in October 2016 that Apple had taken a board seat in Didi Chuxing, a move that James Vincent of The Verge speculated could be a strategic company decision by Apple to get closer to the automobile industry, particularly Didi Chuxing's reported interest in self-driving cars.

On June 6, 2016, Fortune released Fortune 500, their list of companies ranked on revenue generation. In the trailing fiscal year (2015), Apple appeared on the list as the top tech company. It ranked third, overall, with $233 billion in revenue. This represents a movement upward of two spots from the previous year's list.

On April 6, 2017, Apple launched Clips, an app that allows iPad and iPhone users to make and edit short videos with text, graphics, and effects. The app provides a way to produce short videos to share with other users on the Messages app, Instagram, Facebook, and other social networks. Apple also introduced Live Titles for Clips that allows users to add live animated captions and titles using their voice.

In May 2017, Apple refreshed two of its website designs. Their public relations "Apple Press Info" website was changed to an "Apple Newsroom" site, featuring a greater emphasis on imagery and therefore lower information density, and combines press releases, news items, and photos. Its "Apple Leadership" overview of company executives was also refreshed, adding a simpler layout with a prominent header image and two-column text fields. 9to5Mac noted the design similarities to several of Apple's redesigned apps in iOS 10, particularly its Apple Music and News software.

In June 2017, Apple announced the HomePod, its smart speaker aimed to compete against Sonos, Google Home, and Amazon Echo. Towards the end of the year, TechCrunch reported that Apple was acquiring Shazam, a company specializing in music, TV, film and advertising recognition. The acquisition was confirmed a few days later, reportedly costing Apple $400 million, with media reports noting that the purchase looked like a move by Apple to get data and tools to bolster its Apple Music streaming service. The purchase was approved by EU later in September 2018.

Also in June 2017, Apple appointed Jamie Erlicht and Zack Van Amburg to head the newly formed worldwide video unit. In November 2017, Apple announced it was branching out into original scripted programming: a drama series starring Jennifer Aniston and Reese Witherspoon, and a reboot of the anthology series Amazing Stories with Steven Spielberg. In June 2018, Apple signed the Writer's Guild of America's minimum basic agreement and Oprah Winfrey to a multi-year content partnership. Additional partnerships for original series include Sesame Workshop and DHX Media and its subsidiary Peanuts Worldwide, as well as a partnership with A24 to create original films. As of January 2019, Apple has ordered twenty-one television series and one film. There are five series in development at Apple.

On June 5, 2018, Apple deprecated OpenGL and OpenGL ES across all operating systems and urged developers to use Metal instead.

In August 2018, Apple purchased Akonia Holographics for its augmented reality goggle lens. On February 14, 2019, Apple acquired DataTiger for its digital marketing technology.

On January 29, 2019, Apple reported its first decline in revenues and profits in a decade.

In February 2019 they bought Conversational computing company PullString (formerly ToyTalk)

On July 25, 2019, Apple and Intel announced an agreement for Apple to acquire the smartphone modem business of Intel Mobile Communications for US$1 billion.

Products

Macintosh

Macintoshes currently in production:

  • iMac: Consumer all-in-one desktop computer, introduced in 1998.
  • Mac Mini: Consumer sub-desktop computer, introduced in 2005.
  • MacBook Pro: Professional notebook, introduced in 2006.
  • Mac Pro: Workstation desktop computer, introduced in 2006.
  • MacBook Air: Consumer ultra-thin, ultra-portable notebook, introduced in 2008.

Apple sells a variety of computer accessories for Macs, including Thunderbolt Display, Magic Mouse, Magic Trackpad, Magic Keyboard, the AirPort wireless networking products, and Time Capsule.

iPod

On October 23, 2001, Apple introduced the iPod digital music player. Several updated models have since been introduced, and the iPod brand is now the market leader in portable music players by a significant margin. More than 390 million units have shipped as of September 2015. Apple has partnered with Nike to offer the Nike+iPod Sports Kit, enabling runners to synchronize and monitor their runs with iTunes and the Nike+ website.

In late July 2017, Apple discontinued its iPod Nano and iPod Shuffle models, leaving only the iPod Touch available for purchase.

iPhone

At the Macworld Conference & Expo in January 2007, Steve Jobs introduced the long-anticipated iPhone, a convergence of an Internet-enabled smartphone and iPod. The first-generation iPhone was released on June 29, 2007, for $499 (4 GB) and $599 (8 GB) with an AT&T contract. On February 5, 2008, it was updated to have 16 GB of memory, in addition to the 8 GB and 4 GB models. It combined a 2.5G quad band GSM and EDGE cellular phone with features found in handheld devices, running a scaled-down version of OS X (dubbed iPhone OS after the launch and later renamed to iOS), with various Mac OS X applications such as Safari and Mail. It also includes web-based and Dashboard apps such as Google Maps and Weather. The iPhone features a 3.5-inch (89 mm) touchscreen display, Bluetooth, and Wi-Fi (both "b" and "g").

A second version, the iPhone 3G, was released on July 11, 2008, with a reduced price of $199 for the 8 GB model and $299 for the 16 GB model. This version added support for 3G networking and assisted GPS navigation. The flat silver back and large antenna square of the original model were eliminated in favor of a glossy, curved black or white back. Software capabilities were improved with the release of the App Store, which provided iPhone-compatible applications to download. On April 24, 2009, the App Store surpassed one billion downloads. On June 8, 2009, Apple announced the iPhone 3GS. It provided an incremental update to the device, including faster internal components, support for faster 3G speeds, video recording capability, and voice control.

At the Worldwide Developers Conference (WWDC) on June 7, 2010, Apple announced the redesigned iPhone 4. It featured a 960 × 640 display, the Apple A4 processor, a gyroscope for enhanced gaming, a 5MP camera with LED flash, front-facing VGA camera and FaceTime video calling. Shortly after its release, reception issues were discovered by consumers, due to the stainless steel band around the edge of the device, which also serves as the phone's cellular signal and Wi-Fi antenna. The issue was corrected by a "Bumper Case" distributed by Apple for free to all owners for a few months. In June 2011, Apple overtook Nokia to become the world's biggest smartphone maker by volume. On October 4, 2011, Apple unveiled the iPhone 4S, which was first released on October 14, 2011. It features the Apple A5 processor and Siri voice assistant technology, the latter of which Apple had acquired in 2010 from SRI International Artificial Intelligence Center. It also features an updated 8MP camera with new optics. Apple began a new accessibility feature, Made for iPhone Hearing Aids with the iPhone 4S. Made for iPhone Hearing Aids feature Live Listen, it can help the user hear a conversation in a noisy room or hear someone speaking across the room. Apple sold 4 million iPhone 4S phones in the first three days of availability.

On September 12, 2012, Apple introduced the iPhone 5. It has a 4-inch display, 4G LTE connectivity, and the upgraded Apple A6 chip, among several other improvements. Two million iPhones were sold in the first twenty-four hours of pre-ordering and over five million handsets were sold in the first three days of its launch. Upon the launch of the iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C, Apple set a new record for first-weekend smartphone sales by selling over nine million devices in the first three days of its launch. The release of the iPhone 5S and 5C is the first time that Apple simultaneously launched two models.

A patent filed in July 2013 revealed the development of a new iPhone battery system that uses location data in combination with data on the user's habits to moderate the handsets' power settings accordingly. Apple is working towards a power management system that will provide features such as the ability of the iPhone to estimate the length of time a user will be away from a power source to modify energy usage and a detection function that adjusts the charging rate to best suit the type of power source that is being used.

In a March 2014 interview, Apple designer Jonathan Ive used the iPhone as an example of Apple's ethos of creating high-quality, life-changing products. He explained that the phones are comparatively expensive due to the intensive effort that is used to make them:

We don't take so long and make the way we make for fiscal reasons ... Quite the reverse. The body is made from a single piece of machined aluminum... The whole thing is polished first to a mirror finish and then is very finely textured, except for the Apple logo. The chamfers [smoothed-off edges] are cut with diamond-tipped cutters. The cutters don't usually last very long, so we had to figure out a way of mass-manufacturing long-lasting ones. The camera cover is sapphire crystal. Look at the details around the SIM-card slot. It's extraordinary!

―Jonathan Ive

On September 9, 2014, Apple introduced the iPhone 6, alongside the iPhone 6 Plus that both have screen sizes over 4-inches. One year later, Apple introduced the iPhone 6S, and iPhone 6S Plus, which introduced a new technology called 3D Touch, including an increase of the rear camera to 12 MP, and the FaceTime camera to 5 MP. On March 21, 2016, Apple introduced the iPhone SE that has a 4-inch screen size last used with the 5S and has nearly the same internal hardware as the 6S.

In July 2016, Apple announced that one billion iPhones had been sold.

On September 7, 2016, Apple introduced the iPhone 7 and the iPhone 7 Plus, which feature improved system and graphics performance, add water resistance, a new rear dual-camera system on the 7 Plus model, and, controversially, remove the 3.5 mm headphone jack.

On September 12, 2017, Apple introduced the iPhone 8 and iPhone 8 Plus, standing as evolutionary updates to its previous phones with a faster processor, improved display technology, upgraded camera systems and wireless charging. The company also announced iPhone X, which radically changes the hardware of the iPhone lineup, removing the home button in favor of facial recognition technology and featuring a near bezel-less design along with wireless charging.

On September 12, 2018, Apple introduced the iPhone XS, iPhone XS Max and iPhone XR. The iPhone XS and iPhone XS Max features Super Retina displays, a faster and improved dual camera system that offers breakthrough photo and video features, the first 7-nanometer chip in a smartphone — the A12 Bionic chip with next-generation Neural Engine — faster Face ID, wider stereo sound and introduces Dual SIM to iPhone. The iPhone XR comes in an all-screen glass and aluminium design with the most advanced LCD in a smartphone featuring a 6.1-inch Liquid Retina display, A12 Bionic chip with next-generation Neural Engine, the TrueDepth camera system, Face ID and an advanced camera system that creates dramatic portraits using a single camera lens.

On September 10, 2019, Apple introduced the iPhone 11, iPhone 11 Pro, and the iPhone 11 Pro Max. The iPhone 11 features the same Liquid Retina LCD display used in 2018's iPhone XR. Overall, the iPhone 11 retains the same glass and aluminum design as the iPhone XR while adding in new features such as the addition of an Ultra-Wide 12mp camera, a battery that lasts 1 hour longer than the iPhone XR and an IP 68 rating. The iPhone 11 Pro and iPhone 11 Pro Max features an all-new textured matte glass and stainless steel design and a triple camera setup that included an Ultra Wide, Wide and Telephoto camera. The iPhone 11 Pro series' battery life was capable of lasting up to 5 hours more than the iPhone XS and XS Max. The iPhone 11 Pro and Pro Max also features a new Super Retina XDR OLED display that was capable of a screen brightness of 800 nits. All new iPhones announced at Apple's September 2019 feature an A13 Bionic chip with a third-generation Neural Engine, an Apple U1 chip, spatial audio playback, a low light photo mode and an improved Face ID system.

iPad

On January 27, 2010, Apple introduced their much-anticipated media tablet, the iPad. It offers multi-touch interaction with multimedia formats including newspapers, e-books, photos, videos, music, word processing documents, video games, and most existing iPhone apps using a 9.7-inch screen. It also includes a mobile version of Safari for web browsing, as well as access to the App Store, iTunes Library, iBookstore, Contacts, and Notes. Content is downloadable via Wi-Fi and optional 3G service or synced through the user's computer. AT&T was initially the sole U.S. provider of 3G wireless access for the iPad.

On March 2, 2011, Apple introduced the iPad 2, which had a faster processor and a camera on the front and back. It also added support for optional 3G service provided by Verizon in addition to AT&T. The availability of the iPad 2 was initially limited as a result of a devastating earthquake and tsunami in Japan in March 2011.

The third-generation iPad was released on March 7, 2012, and marketed as "the new iPad". It added LTE service from AT&T or Verizon, an upgraded A5X processor, and Retina display. The dimensions and form factor remained relatively unchanged, with the new iPad being a fraction thicker and heavier than the previous version and featuring minor positioning changes.

On October 23, 2012, Apple's fourth-generation iPad came out, marketed as the "iPad with Retina display". It added the upgraded A6X processor and replaced the traditional 30-pin dock connector with the all-digital Lightning connector. The iPad Mini was also introduced. It featured a reduced 7.9-inch display and much of the same internal specifications as the iPad 2.

On October 22, 2013, Apple introduced the iPad Air and the iPad Mini with Retina Display, both featuring a new 64-bit Apple A7 processor.

The iPad Air 2 was unveiled on October 16, 2014. It added better graphics and central processing and a camera burst mode as well as minor updates. The iPad Mini 3 was unveiled at the same time.

Since its launch, iPad users have downloaded over three billion apps. The total number of App Store downloads, as of June 2015, is over 100 billion.

On September 9, 2015, Apple announced the iPad Pro, an iPad with a 12.9-inch display that supports two new accessories, the Smart Keyboard and Apple Pencil. An updated IPad Mini 4 was announced at the same time. A 9.7-inch iPad Pro was announced on March 21, 2016. On June 5, 2017, Apple announced a new iPad Pro with a 10.5-inch display to replace the 9.7 inch model and an updated 12.9-inch model.

Apple Watch

The original Apple Watch smartwatch was announced by Tim Cook on September 9, 2014, being introduced as a product with health and fitness-tracking. It was released on April 24, 2015.

The second generation of Apple Watch, Apple Watch Series 2, was released in September 2016, featuring greater water resistance, a faster processor, and brighter display. It was also released alongside a cheaper Series 1.

On September 12, 2017, Apple introduced the Apple Watch Series 3 featuring LTE cellular connectivity, giving the wearable independence from an iPhone except for the setup process.

On September 12, 2018, Apple introduced the Apple Watch Series 4, featuring new display, electrocardiogram, and fall detection.

On September 10, 2019, Apple introduced the Apple Watch Series 5, featuring a new magnetometer, a faster processor, and a new always-on display. The Series 4 was discontinued.

Apple TV

At the 2007 Macworld conference, Jobs demonstrated the Apple TV (Jobs accidentally referred to the device as "iTV", its codename, while on stage), a set-top video device intended to bridge the sale of content from iTunes with high-definition televisions. The device, running a variant of Mac OS X, links up to a user's TV and syncs over the wireless or wired network with one computer's iTunes library and can stream content from an additional four. The Apple TV originally incorporated a 40 GB hard drive for storage, included outputs for HDMI and component video, and played video at a maximum resolution of 720p.[137] On May 30, 2007, a 160 GB hard disk drive was released alongside the existing 40 GB model. A software update released on January 15, 2008, allowed media to be purchased directly from the Apple TV.

In September 2009, Apple discontinued the original 40 GB Apple TV but continued to produce and sell the 160 GB Apple TV. On September 1, 2010, Apple released a completely redesigned Apple TV running on an iOS variant and discontinued the older model, which ran on a Mac OS X variant. The new device is one-fourth the size, runs quieter, and replaces the need for a hard drive with media streaming from any iTunes library on the network along with 8 GB of flash memory to cache downloaded media. Like the iPad and the iPhone, Apple TV runs on an A4 processor. The memory included in the device is half of that in the iPhone 4 at 256 MB; the same as the iPad, iPhone 3GS, third and fourth-generation iPod Touch.

It has HDMI out as the only video output source. Features include access to the iTunes Store to rent movies and TV shows (purchasing has been discontinued), streaming from internet video sources, including YouTube and Netflix, and media streaming from an iTunes library. Apple also reduced the price of the device to $99. A third generation of the device was introduced at an Apple event on March 7, 2012, with new features such as higher resolution (1080p) and a new user interface.

At the September 9, 2015, event, Apple unveiled an overhauled Apple TV, which now runs a subsequent variant of iOS called tvOS, and contains 32 GB or 64 GB of NAND Flash to store games, programs, and to cache the current media playing. The release also coincided with the opening of a separate Apple TV App Store and a new Siri Remote with a glass touchpad, gyroscope, and microphone.

On December 12, 2016, Apple released a new iOS and tvOS media player app called TV to replace the existing "Videos" iOS application.

At the September 12, 2017, event, Apple released a new 4K Apple TV with the same form factor as the 4th Generation model. The 4K model is powered by the A10X SoC designed in-house that also powers their second-generation iPad Pro. The 4K model also has support for high dynamic range.

On March 25, 2019, Apple announced Apple TV+, their upcoming over-the-top subscription video on-demand web television service, will arrive Fall 2019. TV+ features exclusive original shows, movies, and documentaries. They also announced an update to the TV app with a new "Channels" feature and that the TV app will expand to macOS, numerous smart television models, Roku devices, and Amazon Fire TV devices later in 2019.

Home Pod

Apple's first smart speaker, the HomePod was released on February 9, 2018, after being delayed from its initial December 2017 release. It also features seven tweeters in the base, a four-inch woofer in the top, and six microphones for voice control and acoustic optimization. On September 12, 2018, Apple announced that HomePod is adding new features—search by lyrics, set multiple timers, make and receive phone calls, Find My iPhone, Siri Shortcuts—and Siri languages. In 2019, Apple, Google, Amazon, and Zigbee Alliance announced a partnership to make smart home products work together.

Software

Apple develops its own operating systems to run on its devices, including macOS for Mac personal computers, iOS for its iPhone and iPod Touch smartphones, iPadOS for its newer iPad tablets, watchOS for its Apple Watch smartwatches, and tvOS for its Apple TV digital media player.

For iOS and macOS, Apple also develops its own software titles, including Pages for writing, Numbers for spreadsheets, and Keynote for presentations, as part of its iWork productivity suite. For macOS, it also offers iMovie and Final Cut Pro X for video editing, and GarageBand and Logic Pro X for music creation.

Apple's range of server software includes the operating system macOS Server; Apple Remote Desktop, a remote systems management application; and Xsan, a storage area network file system.

Apple also offers online services with iCloud, which provides cloud storage and synchronization for a wide range of user data, including documents, photos, music, device backups, and application data, and Apple Music, its music and video streaming service.

Electric Vehicles

According to the Sydney Morning Herald, Apple wants to start producing an electric car with autonomous driving as soon as 2020. Apple has made efforts to recruit battery development engineers and other electric automobile engineers from A123 Systems, LG Chem, Samsung Electronics, Panasonic, Toshiba, Johnson Controls and Tesla Motors.

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