Chronology of Personal Computers

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Last updated: 2022 April 29.


1994

January 5
  • Apple Computer announces eWorld, an online service for Apple tech support and a virtual shopping mall. It is to replace AppleLink. [583.35] [2605.150]
January
  • Apple Computer shows its first PowerPC product, an upgrade board with a 66 MHz PowerPC 601 microprocessor, for many of Apple's Centris and Quadra Macintosh computers. [583.34] [1597.86]
  • NEC Technologies ships the NEC MultiSpin 4xPro quad-speed CD-ROM drive, for US$1000. [74] [429.37]
  • AST Research sues Texas Instruments for patent infringement. Texas Instruments countersues. [548.369]
  • Shipments of Apple Computer Macintosh computers hits 1 million for the previous four month period, for the first time. [46]
  • The first test versions of the 100 MHz PowerPC 604 processor are created by IBM and Motorola. [338]
  • Newer Technology introduces the Quadra Overdrive at Macworld Expo. The clock-doubled accelerator boards fit in the 68040 socket of the Macintosh Quadra or Centris. Processor speeds of 40 MHz and 50 MHz are available, for US$1700. [1730.38]
  • Apple Computer announces that it will license its System 7.x operating system to other hardware companies. [75]
January 18
  • The lawsuit between Stac Electronics and Microsoft begins court sessions. [1700.153]
January 19
  • Shipments of Windows to date: 40 million. [909.236]
January (month)
  • Top selling MS-DOS/Windows computer game in the USA during the month: SimCity 2000. [1509.184]
  • Top selling Amiga computer game in the USA during the month: AD&D Gateway to the Savage Frontier. [1509.184]
  • Top selling Macintosh computer game in the USA during the month: SimCity 2000. [1509.184]
(month unknown)
  • Microsoft offers Mosaic Communications US$1 million to license its browser code. James Clark declines the offer. [784.34] [947.183]
February 9
  • Electronic Arts and Broderbund Software announce a proposed merger, in a stock swap valued at about US$408 million. [468.10] [1508.13] [1762.172]
February
  • IBM releases XR06200 ServicePak for OS/2 2.1. [858.71]
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  • Microsoft releases Microsoft Windows 3.11. It includes minor driver updates, but more importantly it gives Microsoft the opportunity to include a "certificate of authenticity" hologram sticker on the packaging, making illegal copying more difficult. [509.177] (January [687.32])
  • Apple Computer introduces the Macintosh LC 575 and LC 550. [46]
  • Apple Computer introduces QuickTime 2.0, with interactive television, music and full-screen video support. [46] (released in June [884.65])
  • IBM announces that it will shut down its Ambra Europe company by the end of March. [76]
  • At the International Solid-State Circuits Conference Intel demonstrates a 150 MHz Pentium processor. [276] [541]
  • Microsoft releases MS-DOS 6.21, removing DoubleSpace disk compression. [90] (March [695])
  • Stock price of Media Vision drops almost in half, the day after reporting revenue of US$241 million for 1993, after disclosing US$81 million in unsold inventory, and price cuts to match competitors. [2585.10]
February 17
  • The Fox Broadcasting Company airs The Simpsons TV show in the US. Appearing is a personal computer with keyboard and monitor. [1800]
February 23
  • A US District Court rules that Microsoft violated patents held by Stac Electronics, in data compression used in Microsoft's DoubleSpace in DOS 6. Microsoft is ordered to remove or replace the technology, and pay US$120 million in damages. The court also finds that Stac illegally used access to Microsoft's trade secrets to make Stacker compatible with DOS 6.0. Microsoft is awarded US$13.6 million in damages. [82] [1700.156]
February (month)
  • Top selling MS-DOS/Windows computer game in the USA during the month: SimCity 2000. [1510.176]
  • Top selling Amiga computer game in the USA during the month: AD&D Gateway to the Savage Frontier. [1510.176]
  • Top selling Macintosh computer game in the USA during the month: SimCity 2000. [1510.176]
(month unknown)
  • Cyrix ships the 33/66 MHz Cx486DRx2 processor. Price is US$399. [538.160] [689.52]
  • Advanced Micro Devices officially announces availability of the 486SX2 processor, offering clock-doubling to low clock rate systems. Price in 1000 unit quantities is US$165 (25/50 MHz) and US$137 (20/40 MHz). [276]
  • IBM announces that it has produced more than 250,000 PowerPC chips to date. [276]
  • Apple Computer releases the Apple Color StyleWriter Pro 360dpi color ink jet printer. [429.37]
  • Apple Computer ships Macintosh Application Environment 1.0 for the HP-UX operating system with the Motif interface, and the Solaris operating system with the OpenLook interface. [429.37]
  • Shipments of Apple Computer Newton MessagePad 100 systems in the first five months: 80,000. [337]
March 4
  • Apple Computer introduces the Newton MessagePad 110 handheld computer. It features 1 MB RAM, 20-MHz ARM610 processor, and runs on four AA batteries. Remote data transfer rate is 38.5 kbps. Battery life is five times that of the Model 100. Price is US$599. [46] [271.N7] [337] [429.36]
  • Apple Computer introduces an improved Newton MessagePad 100. It is physically identical to the previously released model, but contains improved software in ROM. Price is US$499. [46] [271.N7] [337] [429.36] [2605.196]
March 14
  • Apple Computer introduces the Power Macintosh 6100/60 computer. It features a 60 MHz PowerPC 601 processor, 68LC040 emulation ROM, 8 MB RAM, 160 MB hard drive, 14-inch monitor, SCSI, Ethernet, 1 NuBus slot, System 7 operating system. Price is US$2209. [337] [856] [46] [75] [140] [205.97] [384.48] [397.12] [429.92] [507.36] [538] [548.159] [588.39,58] [589.41] [592.21] [625.26] [693.209] [881.81] [1597.86] [2605.70,235] (April [550.39])
  • Apple Computer introduces the Power Macintosh 7100/66 computer. It features a 66 MHz PowerPC 601 processor, 68LC040 emulation ROM, 8 MB RAM, 250 MB hard drive, 1 MB video RAM, 14-inch monitor, SCSI, Ethernet, 3 NuBus slots, System 7 operating system. Price is US$3379. [46] [75] [140] [205.97] [337] [384.48] [397.12] [429.92] [507.36] [538] [548.159] [588.39,58] [589.41] [592.21] [625.26] [693.209] [881.81] [1205.36] [1597.86] (April [550.39])
  • Apple Computer introduces the Power Macintosh 8100/80 computer. It features a 80 MHz PowerPC 601 processor, secondary external cache, 68LC040 emulation ROM, 8 MB RAM, 250 MB hard drive, 2 MB video RAM, 14-inch monitor, SCSI, Ethernet, 3 NuBus slots, System 7 operating system. Price is US$4869. [337] [46] [75] [140] [205.97] [384.48] [397.12] [429.92] [507.36] [538] [548.159] [588.39,58] [589.41] [592.21] [625.26] [693.209] [881.81] [1597.86] (April [550.39])
  • Apple Computer introduces an upgrade card for Macintosh computers using a 68040 processor. The card includes a PowerPC 601 processor running at 66 or 80 MHz, a Level 2 cache, and 4 MB ROM. Price is US$699. [337]
March
  • Apple Computer releases the System 7.1 operating system for the Macintosh. [140]
  • Apple Computer discusses its next-generation operating system, code-named Copland, due for release in 1995, and Gershwin for 1996. [1559] [1721.29] [1880.20] (February [1597.86])
  • Cyrix revises its 486DX and 486DX2 processors. [520]
  • Cyrix begins new shipments of the Cx486DX microprocessor, after fixing a flaw in the 32-bit floating-point code. [507.26] [509.217]
  • Apple Computer ships the Macintosh Quadra 610 DOS Compatible. It features a 40 MHz Motorola 68LC040 chip and a 25 MHz Intel 486SX chip, for US$1580. [77]
  • Intel introduces and ships the IntelDX4 processor. The processor can run its internal clock at 2x, 2.5x, or 3x the external clock rate. Combined with a 0.6 micron BiCMOS manufacturing process, this allows operation at up to 100 MHz. The internal cache is doubled from previous 486 chips to 16 kB. The processor incorporates 1.6 million transistors, and operates on 3.3 volts. Code-name during development was P24C. The 25/75 MHz IntelDX 319 processor is rated at 53 MIPS, and is priced at US$475 in 1000 unit quantities. The 33/100 MHz IntelDX 435 processor is rated at 70.7 MIPS, and is priced at US$580 in 1000 unit quantities. The "486" designation was dropped in favor of a name that can be protected as a trademark. [78] [177.103] [62] [551.259] [584.43] [602.4] [1054] (US$649 for 100 MHz [276])
  • Intel announces a 25/50 MHz IntelSX2 clock-doubled 486 processor. The processor can be used in a 25 MHz 386 processor socket. Price is US$189 in 1000 unit quantities. [79] [337]
  • Novell ships Novell DOS 7.0. [548.159] (December 1993 [1639.123])
  • Microsoft ships Microsoft Office Standard 4.2. [212.216]
  • Intel introduces and ships faster Pentium chips, based on 0.6 micron BiCMOS manufacturing. The processor now includes clock-doubling of 1.5 or 2 time the external clock rate, allowing processor speeds of up to 100 MHz on a 50-66 MHz system bus. The processor also includes power management capabilities to allow stopping and restarting the processor. Code-name during development was P54C. The 60/90 MHz Pentium 735 processor is rated at 149.8 MIPS, and is priced at US$849 in 1000 unit quantities. The 66/100 MHz Pentium 815 processor is rated at 166.3 MIPS, and is priced at US$995 in 1000 unit quantities. [205.98] [265] [62] [550.29] [551.168,259] [557.134] [584.43] [689.115] [276] [337] [968]
  • Aldus and Adobe Systems announce plans to merge the two companies. [211.82] [584.133]
  • IBM and Motorola announce the 100 MHz PowerPC 601 processor. [265] (April [665.41])
  • NexGen introduces the Nx586 processor. It includes two integer units, 16 kB instruction cache, 16 kB data cache, Level 2 cache controller, support for external floating point unit. IBM has manufactured initial samples using a 0.5 micron CMOS process. Pricing is US$506 (66 MHz) and US$460 (60 MHz). [337] [557.134]
  • The first issue of PC Gamer magazine is available in the USA. [2175.36]
  • In Finland, Linus Torvalds uploads his Unix-like operating system to an ftp site as FREIX (stands for Free Unix) v1.0. The site operator changes the name to Linux. [1451.12] [1601.9] [1639.124] [1648.50] [1897.130]
March 21
  • Novell announces it is acquiring WordPerfect Corporation for US$1.4 billion, and will acquire Quattro Pro from Borland International for US$145 million. [79] [211.82] [392.1] [435.4,43] [699.152] [1700.170] (June [216.4] [219.141] [424.22] [455.4]) (July [392.1]) (acquires WordPerfect for US$885 million in stock [216.4]) (\iQuattro Pro\i sold to WordPerfect [102.20]) (US$110 million for Quattro Pro [548.343])
March
  • Canon announces its intention to market PowerPC-based systems running Microsoft's Windows NT. The systems will be built by PowerHouse. [337]
  • A court rules in favor of Advanced Micro Devices against Intel in the 287 microcode infringement case. The ruling lets Advanced Micro Devices continue to use Intel microcode on its current 486 processors. [337]
January-March
  • In the first three months of the year, Compaq Computer has shipped 487,948 computers, the most of any computer maker during that period. [1427.63]
(month unknown)
  • The Software Publishers Association holds its annual Spring Symposium and Excellence in Software Awards ceremony. Best Adventure/Fantasy Role-Playing Game: Myst by Broderbund. Best Simulation: SimCity 2000 by Maxis. Best Strategy Game: Iron Helix by Spectrum HoloByte. Best Sports Program: IndyCar Racing by Papyrus Software. Best Action/Arcade Game: Lemmings 2: The Tribes by Psygnosis. [1509.12]
  • Quote from Robert Stearns, vice-president of corporate development for Compaq Computer, on the rise of PowerPC: those supporting PowerPC "are smoking dope. There's no way it's going to work.". [857.26]
  • IBM closes down the European division of the Ambra company. [504.44]
  • Intel announces the 486SX2 processor. It can replace the 486SX in 16-25 MHz systems with a clock-doubled processor. Price is US$249. [338]
April 4
  • Jim Clark and Marc Andreesson incorporate Mosaic Communications. Original choice of company name was Electric Media. [1423.58] [1655.D3] [1700.175] (April 6 [1642.87]) (March [1298.191])
April
  • Symantec and Central Point Software Incorporated agree to merge companies in a stock swap valued at about US$60 million. [82] [211.82] [509.34]
  • Broderbund Software calls off the proposed merger with Electronic Arts, due to a significant drop in the stock value of Electronic Arts. Broderbund pays US$10 million to cancel the deal. [468.10] [1516.30] (May [1762.172])
  • Motorola formally introduces the 50 MHz 68060 processor. Price is US$263 in 10,000 unit quantities. A 66 MHz version is scheduled to ship near the end of the year. [83] [338]
  • IBM and Motorola announce the 100 MHz PowerPC 604 processor. It features 16 kB data cache, 16 kB instruction cache, one floating-point unit, and three integer units. Two of the integer units perform single clock cycle instruction, while the other is used for integer multiplication and division. The processor uses 3.6 million transistors. [84.33] [265] [428.209] [665.41] [338] (March [205.316]) (six execution units [428.209])
  • IBM releases XR06300 ServicePak for OS/2 2.1 for Windows. [858.71]
  • IBM releases PC-DOS 6.3. [90]
  • Mindscape acquires Strategic Simulations. [1537.28] [2159.22]
  • The Computer Game Developer's Conference is held in Chicago, Illinois. The core of the Doom game is shown running in Windows 4.0. [1473.10]
  • The U.S. Patent and Trademark Office, after re-examining the multimedia patent application it granted to Compton's New Media in August 1993, decides to reject all 41 of the application's claims. [99] [468.8] [1510.14]
April 26
  • Commodore shuts down the Amiga division. [2611.22]
April 29
  • Commodore International and Commodore Electronics (two of the many international components of Commodore Business Machines) file for voluntary liquidation. [476.6] [491.52] [600.19] [1473.11] [1516.30] [1762.168] [2605.13] [2611.22] [2634.142]
(month unknown)
  • IBM and Cyrix sign a five-year agreement for IBM to manufacture x86 processors for Cyrix, and for IBM to sell the processors as well as Cyrix. [367]
  • Compaq Computer introduces the Contura Aero notebook computer. It uses a 486SXJ processor. [367]
May
  • Apple Computer introduces the 500 series of PowerBook computers (520, 520c, 540, 540c). All use clock-doubled Motorola 68LC040 microprocessors, at speeds of 50/25 MHz or 66/33 MHz. Prices range from US$2270 to US$3760. [46] [542.143] [739.110] [739.130]
  • Apple Computer introduces the PowerBook Duo 280 and 280c. The 280c features a 33 MHz 68LC040, and 8.4-inch LCD display. [46] [542.143] [589.56]
  • Intergraph introduces the TD-4 desktop system, with dual 90 MHz Pentium processors and PCI bus. [863.14]
  • Intergraph introduces the TD-5 deskside system, with dual 90 MHz Pentium processors and PCI bus. [863.14]
  • Motorola ships sample copies of the PowerPC 603 processor. Volume pricing is set at US$160 (66 MHz) and US$199 (80 MHz) in 20,000 unit quantities. [85] [520]
  • Microsoft sends out the first official beta test version of what will be Windows 95. [209.30]
May 17
  • Iran issues a 50 rial postage stamp for World Telecommunications Day, depicting a personal computer. [2422.1021]
May 25
  • Paramount Pictures releases the film Beverly Hills Cop 3 to theaters in the USA.
    • A personal computer appears, used to monitor the park.
    • A personal computer is used in control of counterfeiting money.
    [2487]
  • Acclaim releases the Mortal Kombat video game for personal computers in the US. [1806]
(month unknown)
  • United Microelectronics announces the U5S microprocessor family, compatible with the Intel 486SX. Clock rates of 25, 33, and 40 MHz are announced. The processor design was created by Meridian Semiconductor. The processors offer 20-50% faster performance than equivalent Intel processors, and consume less power. Marketing of the processors is likely to be limited to Europe and Asia. [520] [621]
  • IBM and Motorola show a 120 MHz PowerPC 601 processor running in a prototype Power Macintosh. [588.33] [244]
  • Cyrix begins volume shipments of its 66MHz 486DX2 processor. Price is US$249 in 1000 unit quantities. [244]
  • Cyrix announces an 80 MHz 486DX2 processor, to be available in a few months. Price is to be US$294 in 1000 unit quantities. [244]
  • IBM announces that it will resell the Cyrix DX2 processors under its Blue Lightning label. Pricing is US$270 for 66 MHz and $320 for 80 MHz. [244]
  • Compaq Computer announces the Presario 660 and 860 computers, the first based on 66 MHz 486DX2 processors from Advanced Micro Devices. [244]
  • The SCSI-2 standard is finalized as ANSI X3.131-1994. [542.111] [543]
  • Microsoft releases the FoxPro 2.6 Standard Edition for Windows database program for US$495 (initially US$99). [689.44] [691.28]
  • Microsoft releases the FoxPro 2.6 Standard Edition for MS-DOS database program for US$495 (initially US$99). [689.44] [691.28]
  • Adobe releases Adobe Illustrator 5.5 for the Macintosh. [592.179]
June 7
  • (to June 18) At the Trump Tower in New York City, the Intel World Chess Championship Quarter-finals are held. Game moves are entered on laptop computers, connected by modems to ImagiNation Network for live interactive coverage for viewers. [2585.16]
June
  • Apple Computer discontinues the DOS Compatible Card after only 2.5 months of offering it. [588.33] (March [592.39])
  • Apple Computer demos a prototype DOS compatibility card for the Power Macintosh. It uses a 50 MHz 486DX2 and has support for networks and SoundBlaster. [715.31]
  • IBM files a motion in court to have the provisions of the 1956 consent decree terminated. [569.138]
  • Apple Computer unveils System 7.5 operating system. [46] [542.187] [1597.86] [1880.20]
  • Apple Computer introduces new Macintosh 630 computers, and the PowerBook 150. [46]
  • Rock music group Jefferson Airplane sues Berkeley Systems for copyright infringement of the flying toasters image in the After Dark screen saver program. [548.378]
  • IBM releases OS/2 for SMP, for multiple-processor systems. [858.71]
  • Microsoft and Stac Electronics settle their legal differences over data compression patents. Microsoft agrees to buy US$40 million of Stac stock, and to pay Stac a further US$43 million in royalties. [86] (July [548.367])
  • Microsoft releases MS-DOS 6.22, bringing back disk compression under the name DriveSpace. [90]
  • Microsoft is granted a trademark to the name "Windows" for software products. [91]
  • Dr. Thomas R. Nicely of Lynchburg College notes that the Pentium processor sometimes produces flawed floating-point results, yielding only 4-8 decimals of precision. [265]
  • Intel discovers a flaw in the Pentium processor's floating-point operations. [856] [1259]
(month unknown)
  • WordStar International, Spinnaker Software, and SoftKey Software Products merge companies, forming SoftKey International. [504.44]
  • Radius and SuperMac announce their intention to merge companies. [588.33]
  • Zilog introduces the 32-bit Z380 processor in the USA. Operating speeds are 18 MHz at 5 volts and 10 MHz at 3.3 volts. The processor is fully Z80 and Z180 compatible, as well as offering 4 GB addressing. Price is US$11.75 in 1000 unit quantities. [824]
  • Apple Computer introduces the "Houdini" board, the DOS Compatibility Card for the Quadra 610, with a 25 MHz 486SX processor. The entire inventory of 25,000 boards sells out in a few months. [204.166]
  • Dragon Systems releases DragonDictate for Windows 1.0, the first software-only PC-based dictation product. [1158.140]
  • Novell halts all development of Novell DOS. [219.141]
  • Merisel buys the ComputerLand chain. [548.433]
  • Canon introduces its first piezo-electric color 720-dpi printer. [1228.49]
  • In England, the author of the Pathogen computer virus is sentenced to 18 months in jail. This is the first prosecution of a computer virus author. [1260.193]
  • IBM releases the IBM ThinkPad 755 portable computer. It is the first notebook computer with a CD-ROM drive. [1602.39]

End of 1994 January-June. Next: 1994 July.

1947-1968 1969-1971 1972-1974 1975 1976 1977 1978 1979 1980 1981
1982 1983 1984 1985 1986 1987 1988 1989 1990 1991
1992 1993 1994 1995 1996 1997 1998 1999 2000 2001
2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008-end


A list of references to all source material is available.

Other web pages of interest:

  • Chronology of Microprocessors
  • Personal Computer References in Pop Culture
  • This Day in Personal Computer and Video Game History

  • Last updated: 2022 April 29.
    Copyright © 1995-2022 (email: ).
    URL: https://pctimeline.info/
    Link to Ken P's home page.