Macworld Expo 2008 is less than 24 hours away and like the die-hard fanboys that we are, we're excited to be back at the Moscone Center covering the show in search of the best Mac deals to be had. This year, however, we're particularly stoked as it marks our 10-year anniversary attending Macworld. So to celebrate the past decade, we've rounded up our favorite (and not so favorite) memories from the Expo floor. From accidentally rubbing elbows with The Woz and Jobs to emergency trips to the hospital, we're leaving no story untold. Plus, we've created a timeline of memorable Macworld product announcements over the last decade. So sit back, grab hold of that Mighty Mouse, and join us for a quick time warp back to 1998.
- 1997: First Macworld with Steve Jobs back in charge of Apple.
This ended the reign of former Apple CEO, Gil Amelio, who's tenure involved a 12-year stock low, various company restructurings, the end of Apple's Copland project, and the end of Apple clones.
- 1998: Steve Jobs introduced the iMac and the PowerBook G3.
Led by Senior Vice President of Industrial Design, Jonathan Ive, Apple's design team introduced the new translucent and gumdrop-colored iMacs, which were an instant hit with Apple fans.
- Low: San Francisco 1998: deal-mac co-founders Dan de Grandpre and Richard Moss head to the Expo knowing jack about San Francisco, so they call a travel agent asking for help. The travel agent booked them in Japan Town, which is exactly 1 kazillion miles from Moscone.
- 1999: Steve Jobs introduced the iBook, QuickTime TV, and AirPort.
The iBook, the current MacBook's predecessor, was the first mainstream computer that sported built-in Wi-Fi. Powered by a 300MHz G3 processor, this 12.1" clamshell laptop featured 32MB of RAM, a 66MHz bus, a 3GB hard drive, and Mac OS 8.6.
- 2000: (New York) Steve Jobs introduced the PowerMac Cube.
Love it or hate it, the Mac G4 Cube was a design masterpiece, winning Ive several design awards. Because of its high price, however, sales of the Cube were slow. In fact, it was more expensive than the comparably-equipped Power Mac G4 of the time. The following year, Apple put the Cube "on ice" gently discontinuing the product, but not before the Cube had gained its cult following.
- High New York 2000: A last minute booth opening netted dealmac one of the best spots at the Expo — our booth was between Microsoft and Adobe, and directly in front of the entrance to that wing at the Javits Center (top picture).
- High New York 2000: The dealmac team meets MacGirl, who professes her love for the site and proceeds to give all dealmac staffers a hug and a kiss on the cheek. It's why we do what we do, people!
- 2001: Steve Jobs introduced the iPod.
Packing a 5GB hard drive, a monochrome screen, and a $399 price tag, the original iPod took the industry by storm, quickly earning the title of the 21st Century Walkman. Not to mention it spooked the likes of Sony and Microsoft who to date have yet to release an MP3 player capable of attaining the iPod's popularity.
- Low: San Francisco 2001: To advertise its Expo bag sponsorship, dealmac uses the catchphrase "check your sack for dealmac" (middle picture). Uggh.
- High San Francisco 2001: dealmac Content Editor, Geordi LaForge, poses for a photo (bottom picture).
- Low: New York 2001: IDG giveth, and IDG taketh away — refusing to renew the sweet booth we had in 2000, dealmac skips presenting this year and has not rented a tradefloor booth since.
- Low: San Francisco 2003: For the 5th year in a row, CE Soft offers its QuicKeys 5.0 software for $50 as its Expo Special.
- Low: San Francisco 2004: Our CEO and Chief Dealguy, Dan de Grandpre, while trying to "impress" a client (and owner of a large Apple retailer), spits his "chocolate purse" dessert from McCormick and Schmick's all over the table and himself. The chocolate mousse is loose!
- Low: San Francisco 2004: Jeffrey Contray, Managing Editor of dealnews, spends the last day of Macworld in the emergency room with strep throat and viral pharyngitis.
- Low: Boston 2004: Macworld's return to Boston is met with small crowds due to Apple's boycotting of the event.
- 2005: Steve Jobs introduced the Mac mini.
Weighing a scant 2.9 pounds, the G4-based Mac mini was Apple's answer to Windows users who were curious about the Mac platform, but didn't want to spend a grand on a new system. This sub-desktop computer wasn't a media center per se, but it managed to shake the PC world into action as various companies immediately tried imitating its design. (Of note, though it wasn't announced at Macworld, 2005 was also the year that Apple switched from the Power PC chip, co-developed by Motorola and IBM, to Intel's Core Duo CPUs. This announcement was made in June at the Wordwide Developer's Conference).
- Low: Boston 2005: While dealmac sends several writers to San Francisco to cover Expo Specials over the course of two or three days, a single dealmac staffer covers the entire Expo in just over an hour. This year also marked the last east coast Macworld.
- High: San Francisco 2005: Dan and Jeffrey Contray discover the Japanese restaurant Ozumo. Its salmon sashimi is simply amazing. Jeff describes it as "the single best piece of fish (he's) ever eaten." (Jeff lives in New York City and has even eaten sushi at 6am at the Tsukiji Fish market in Tokyo — he knows his raw fish!) Impressed so much by the first round of sashimi, the dealmac team skips dessert in lieu of a second order of salmon.
- 2006: Steve Jobs introduced the first Intel-based Apple computers, the MacBook Pro and the iMac Core Duo.
Though it looked like a PowerBook, the new MacBook Pro was the first Apple computer to pack an Intel processor under its hood. The iMac also got an Intel upgrade, much to the chagrin of iMac customers who had just purchased the newly-introduced G5-based iMac months before.
- 2007: Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone. Fanboy wishes came true this year as Steve Jobs announced the much-rumored, highly-anticipated iPhone, a touch-screen smartphone with a virtual keyboard, Internet capabilities, and iPod functionality. Though it lacked 3G support, this AT&T-based phone gave Apple's stock a shot of adrenaline sending it to an all-time high of around $97. (It currently sits at around $172).
- High: San Francisco 2007: dealmac Editor Chuck Phillips, who accidentally snuck into the Apple VIP section before the keynote, is mere feet away from The Jobs and The Woz when they shake hands. He immediately gets a tattoo of an iPhone on his chest, surrounded by "Apple 4 Life". (Not really. Well, that part about the tattoo.)