There has always been something appealing about the iMac line. Even when it first started and looked like a an over sized gumdrop. The iMac is overdue for an update at this point, so it felt like a fun time to look back to the very first version that came out in 1998.
As is the way with Apple, there hadn’t been anything quite like the iMac on the market at that time. All-in-one desktops still aren’t all that common, and other companies have tried it, but none have had the success Apple has had in the market. It’s actually gotten to the point that you wonder if the company isn’t contemplating ending its Mac Pro line since it has been nearly a year and a half since they have been updated as of this writing, and the old average time between updates was 236 days.
In the original release, the “i” in the “iMac” stood for “Internet”, but also set off the company’s love affair with branding items with that lower case letter.
Compared to today’s flat panel version, the original iMac had a 15″ CRT screen with 13.8″ of it being viewable. While the model was updated over its lifespan, the first version had a whopping 32 MB of RAM (current models have 4 GB) and a 4 GB hard drive (the current models have either 500 GB or 1 TB).
The original models were discontinued in March 2003, but they clearly had an impact at bring Macs to more and more people. It’s hard to believe the current line has any relations to the old gumdrops, but they certainly earner their place in computing history while they lasted.