Sunday marked an important anniversary for both Apple and the wider world: it saw the launch of Wi-Fi as a commercial product in the iBook.
When Steve Jobs returned to the company, he took the famous four-grid on a blackboard to show how he wanted to simplify Apple's messy product line …
Left was Desktop and Portable; over the top was consumer and pro. Steve wanted a product for each box.
Filling the portable box into the consumer took some time, but the final result was the iBook. With the styling borrowed from the iMac, this cute look laptop was extremely well received, as CNN noted on the day.
It is portable, wireless and comes in two "fruit flavors." It's the iBook, Apple Computer Inc.'s laptop computer, unveiled Wednesday at the MacWorld Expo Technology Conference in New York City.
Build on pastel-colored theme on the iMac desktop, which has helped to reverse it once stumbling, Apple said it will offer iBook in blueberries and mandarin […]
[IDC analyst Bruce Stephen] said the computer's specifications, which include A 300 MHz processor, 32 MB RAM and a 3.2 GB hard drive fit well with other laptops in the price range.
Much of it can take a back seat to iBook's real appeal.
"Sizzle iMac is really in cosmetics and unique design," Stephen said. "The cachet is what they are trying to do with the iBook as well."
Launch of Wi-Fi
But it was not just the cute design that wowed the audience: it was a unique ability it had. Wireless network.
Steve picked up the machine and crossed the stage with it while connected to a site, and passed the iBook through a hula hoop to prove that there were no wires involved.
A former senior exec at Lucent Technologies last year shared how it was a meeting with Steve Jobs who saw Wi-Fi finally turned into a commercial product after ten years attempt.  Cees and his team had been working for more than a decade to introduce WLAN technology to the masses, but without success. After many attempts, Apple finally came to Lucent and said they wanted to meet […]
"Apple was looking for something different and new for their iBook laptop product, and Steve was very enamored by the idea of portable wireless connectivity Looking back, it seems that he had probably done himself before the meeting, says Cees Links.
Of course, Apple marked its own Wi-Fi card and base station as AirPort – a product category it was eventually leaving just last year – but Steve emphasized that it was based on what would become an industry standard, 802.11, which everyone else would adopt.
The AirPort card was an additional $ 99 with the iBook.
The Beginning of the Mobile Revolution
The launch of Wi-Fi had a major impact on the way we work and play, but it also created the driving force for mobile data, so when people could go online without a wired network connection, they would have the same opportunities in town more portable units.
The iBook was born as Wi-Fi as a consumer product, and it experienced the freedom of portable Internet access that would eventually provide the smartphone. And just as it took Apple to turn Wi-Fi into a consumer-friendly product, the iPhone also took smartphones.
Apple is not so quick to adopt new mobile communications standards these days. The latest Wi-Fi standard is Wi-Fi 6 (a friendlier name given to 802.11ax), and while there has been a suggestion that we can see it supported by this year's iPhones, we are unlikely to see support on Apple's product range before 2020.
The same applies to 5G. While several 5G services are launched in the US, UK and elsewhere, with a few Android smartphones that support the standard today, Apple is not expected to do so until next September. Although fair, it's about when we can expect extensive technology coverage.
See the full iBook launch below.
: AP Photo / Bebeto Matthews