10-year Anniversary of the iMac G4 this year
The iMac G4 was a computer that was produced by Apple from the beginning of 2002 to mid 2004. It replaced the aging iMac G3. The computer had a new design compared to older Macs.
The G4 had a 15-inch LCD which was mounted on an adjustable arm above a hemisphere containing a full-size, tray-loading optical drive and a sixteenth-generation CPU (the PPC 74xx-series). This LCD computer was known and sold as The New iMac, while existing egg-shaped iMac was renamed the “iMac G3” and continued to be sold for a few months. After the iMac G3 was discontinued, it was retroactively labeled iMac G4 to distinguish itself from the succeeding iMac G5.
The iMac G4 was sold with the “Apple Pro Keyboard” which would be later renamed the Apple Keyboard and an Apple Pro Mouse which would be later redesigned and named the Apple Mouse. Also, there was an option to buy the “Apple Pro Speakers”, which were better quality than the internal speakers, which were low quality due to their size. Apple Pro Speakers had a unique, small adaptor and only worked on a select few Apple Macs (such as this one).
Apple advertised it as having the flexibility of a desk lamp and it was nicknamed the “iLamp”, similar to “Luxo Jr.”, who was featured in a short film produced by Pixar, another venture of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. It was featured in an ad, sitting in a store window and “reacting” to every move made by a passer-by on the street. At the end, when the man sticks out his tongue, the iMac responds by opening its optical drive.
The iMac G4 was incrementally upgraded. They were made available with 17-inch (43 cm) and then 20-inch (51 cm) widescreen LCDs over the following two years. By then, Apple had all but eliminated the CRT machines from its product line. However, the LCD iMacs were unable to match the low price point of the previous iMac G3s, largely because of the higher cost of the LCD technology at the time.
The iMac G3 was obsolete by this point, but low-cost machines were particularly important for the education market. It was still being sold for a while after the iMac G4 debuted, until the G3 found a permanent replacement in April 2002 with the eMac.
The iMac G4 was replaced by the iMac G5 on August 31, 2004. Reaction to the iMac G5 was mixed: though it was a more powerful computer, reviewers commented that it was less aesthetic since it did not retain the flexible adjustable arm.
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