On This Day In Tech History

Mac OS X, the beating heart of today’s Macs, iPhones and iPads.

March 24th (25th for us in Asia) marks an important date in tech history. On this day in 2001, Apple released its groundbreaking operating system, OS X, to the public. The world was a very different place back in 2001 and the reality of things back then was that Apple wasn’t doing so well.  Steve Jobs may have saved Apple from the brink with the introduction of the iMac in 1998, but it was the introduction of OS X that was the catalyst for Apple’s rise to world dominance.

Lets take it back a little to the early 90s; The days without Steve Jobs at the helm. Apple’s stock fell a whopping 68% and resulted in the company flirting with bankruptcy. They had promised users a new update time and time again but had nothing to show for it. With projects being killed over and over, they were in desperate need of something new. Enter NeXT. Founded by Steve Jobs during his exile from Apple, NeXT had a surprisingly advanced and sophisticated OS which was pretty much everything that the Mac OS lacked and strived to be. Not only was it fast, stable and almost crash proof, it also had modern networking features which was essential in the internet age that was to come. Ironically, with NeXT, Job’s goal was to put apple out of business.

In 1996, Apple announced that it was purchasing NeXT to build a new OS. Of course, this also meant that Steve Jobs was back in the picture, and boy, what a move it was. Fast forward to March 24, 2001, Apple releases its much awaited new OS, the OS X for US$ 130. Not only did it save Apple from the brink, it also laid the foundation for what would slingshot Apple to the upper echelon of tech behemoths, iOS. That it went beyond the desktop is undoubtedly OS X’s greatest success, spawning the first iPhone in 2007. The rest as they say, is history.

While that is a cool way to end an article, I must at the very least touch on the success Apple has had this past decade. The company became a trillion dollar company in August last year. Yes, that’s right, $1 trillion. As in $1,000,000,000,000. I’m just going to leave it at that. There is literally no other statistic to top that.

Happy 18th birthday OS X, you trillion dollar baby.

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