We got so accustomed to the short, simple names of Apple products, that we never questioned the meaning behind them. Surely, the iPhone and iPod weren’t named like this because Steve Jobs didn’t have any brighter ideas or because it was shorter than “my phone”, a way of expressing property. For those who didn’t become Apple fans in the 90s, but much later, his first presentation of the iMac must have slipped by. On that day, Jobs explained what the “i” actually stood for and made us understand why it has remained, to this day, a symbol of Apple.
The year was 1998. Steve Jobs was releasing the iMac, the result of “a marriage of the excitement of the internet with the simplicity of Macintosh”. “i” was the symbol of the internet, the force that would drive smart gadgets later on and that would become an essential part of our lives. But the prefix represented other values of the company too, such as: individual, instruct, inform and inspire.
Every Apple product was meant as a personal, individual device that would inspire other companies to create better products and would serve as a channel for information and education for the customers. While Apple TV and Apple Watch have been diverted from the i Series, you still rely on iMessaging for free, over-the-internet texts with other Apple consumers and iCloud, where you store all your photos and data.
Long live the “i”!
photo credits: flickr.com/mentalman