The Evolution of the Apple Laptop: 1989 to 2012

Apple's first portable machine, which was launched in 1989, got a very poor response because of its heavy weight and slow performance. But Apple has come a long way since then. From Apple’s first Macintosh Portable to the latest Macbook Pro with Retina Display, here is a timeline of Apple's portable laptops.

1. Macintosh Portable (September-1989)
“The power to be your best. Even when there’s no power”, was the theme line of the print ad of the Macintosh Portable. It was Apple’s first tryst in the portable computer market. However, it got a lukewarm response because of its bulky design and slow performance. It was sold for around $6500.  

2. PowerBook 100 (October-1991)
The PowerBook was designed and manufactured by Sony for Apple. PowerBook received pretty good response from users, despite its slow performance. But the design played an important role in its success. It was then followed by PowerBook 140 and PowerBook 170. It was sold for around $2500.

3. PowerBook Duo 210 (October-1992)
It was a new breed of portables by Apple. The main idea behind the PowerBook Duo 210 was to give a fully fledged desktop computer, which can also be used as a portable computer. Later on, Apple launched DuoDock. DuoDock allowed Duo machines to expand its features instantly, like more VRAM and larger hard drive. PowerBook Duo 210 was sold for around $2250.

 4. PowerBook 190 (August-1995)
PowerBook 190 was the last 68k CPU machine that Apple manufactured. It was sold for around $1700 for 4MB RAM model and $1900 for 8 MB RAM model. 

5. PowerBook 5300 (August-1995)
PowerBook 5300 was the very first PowerPC PowerBook. In 1995 PowerBook came in 2 RAM/HD configurations and 4 Screen configurations. One of these configurations model no. was 5300s. Many 5300s were shipped as Dead On Arrival (DOA), which later became the reason for Apple’s downfall in the 90s. The PowerBook 5300 was sold for around $2300.  

6. PowerBook G3 (November-1997)
As soon as PowerBook G3 was launched, it was named as the fastest notebook in the world. It was the first notebook to use Motorola/IBM’s third generation, PPC 750 processor. PPC 750 was the first processor specially designed to use a cache which was capable of interacting with the processor at a much faster speed than the standard L2 cache. 

7. iBook (September-1999)
iBook was launched in 1999 at the MacWorld and it was the much awaited notebook at that time. iBook was the first notebook with a handle, a feature that was (and is) rarely seen in any notebook. It was sold for around $1599. 

8. PowerBook G4 (January-2001)
PowerBook G4 was the new revamped version of the Apple’s PowerBook line of notebooks. It came with the stylish titanium enclosure, which was only 1 inch thick and 7 inch thinner than the PowerBook G3. However, this dramatic reduction increased the price. The PowerBook G4 was launched in two configurations, priced at $2199 and $2999 .

9. iBook (14.1 inch) (January-2002)
This iBook was launched in January, 2002 and was quire identical to its earlier model, but it came with a screen of 14.1 inch. It was sold for around $1799.

10. PowerBook G4 (17 inch) (September-2003)
PowerBook was similar to its earlier model, but the screen size was of 17 inch. It was sold for around $2999.

11. MacBook Pro (January-2006)
MacBook Pro was the first Apple notebook to use Intel based processors. MacBook Pro can be considered as the final version of PowerBook G4 and this was the first notebook that had Mac in its name. Later Apple decided to drop the Powerbook series and adapt MacBook series completely. It was sold for around $2499.

12. MacBook Pro (17-inch) (April-2006)
MacBook Pro contains 17 inch screen, plus all the features of the MacBook Pro 15.4 inch and many other improvements. This model was also shipped with Intel based processors and was sold for around $2799.

 13. MacBook (May-2006)
Macbook came in two colors Black and White. Macbook received a speed upgrade from Apple. Apple installed Intel core 2 Duo processors in the new Macbook series. MacBook was launched in 3 configurations and was sold for around $1099, $1299 and $1499.

14. MacBook Air (January-2008)
MacBook Air was clearly the most sophisticated and the thinnest notebook ever released by Apple. It was the ultimate ultra-thin-high-end—ultra-portable notebook. Although Apple had to give up the optical drive for this, yet it didn’t stop consumers from buying it. Macbook Air received appreciation from bloggers and reviewers around the globe. It was sold for around $1799.

15. MacBook Pro (with Retina Display) (June-2012)

MacBook Pro with the Retina Display is the latest gift from Apple to its users. This version is similar to the other MacBook Pro versions, but Apple took a giant leap forward by introducing Retina Display in its MacBook Pro line. We have seen Retina Display in Apple’s iPhone and iPad only. Apple has decided to sell MacBook Pro with Retina Display in two configurations, priced at $2199 and $2799