When most people think about Apple and portables, they don’t usually think of failure. However, that’s exactly what happened to one of Apple’s first forays into the portable market with the Apple Newton. The Newton was one earliest examples of a PDA, and despite remaining in the marketplace for six years, it was a failure. The failure was mostly due to the fact that the concept was before it’s time. In actual execution this resulted in an expensive and bulky machine with poor handwriting recognition. In other words, it was everything a PDA should not be. Despite being a failure in the marketplace, some of the Newton still lives on today. Some of the handwriting recognition software of the Newton was added into Mac OSX 10.2 to be used with graphics tablets. Apple also began development of a successor, though it would never reach the market. Finally, and perhaps Newton’s largest contribution, is what some consider its spiritual successor, the hugely popular iPhone.


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