May 6, 1998: The Original iMac Is Unveiled to Mixed Reaction

by Chris Seibold May 06, 2011

No floppy drive, no ADB port, no printer port and a 33.6 Kbps internal modem. Wrap all that up in a bondi blue case designed by Jonathan you've got…not exactly what most Mac users thought they wanted.

Long-time users were outraged that they'd be forced to buy new peripherals and couldn't back up the 4 GB hard drive with a waist-high pile of diskettes. They also wondered about the wisdom of using USB ports, ports that weren't yet widely accepted by the industry.

The truth was that fewer and fewer peripherals were Mac-friendly and by using a connection (in this case USB) friendly to both platforms, Apple ensured greater industry support. The users’ screams of protest were listened to in one case: when the iMac actually shipped, the modem had been bumped to 56.6 Mbps. Mac users first glimpsed Apple's all-in-one gumdrop on May 6, 1998.


  • The bondi blue iMac was the best idea Apple has had since the first 128 Macintosh in 1984. I have two of the later version iMacs. A gray one that I bought in 2000 and a snow one that I bought in 2001 for my daughter. Although I use a G5 iMac most of the time, the other two are connected on a network and are going strong today running OS 10.3.8.

    flyboy had this to say on May 05, 2007 Posts: 30
  • Ah yes, I remember it well. Steve Jobs had recently returned to Apple and was criticized mercilessly for killing the Newton and undoing hardware licensing plans.  Steve answered with the iMac. 
    Do you remember the original iMac box?  Lots of packaging, and cute kids.

    Palo Alto Podcaster had this to say on May 06, 2009 Posts: 1
  • I think you mean 56.6 kbps ... 56.6Mbps would have been impressive!

    Paul Howland had this to say on May 07, 2011 Posts: 38
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