Outbound Laptop, The First PowerBook

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Date: Wednesday, December 12th, 2001, 01:01
Category: Archive


Do you remember the Outbound? You may be dating yourself by answering “yes” but if you have ever been so lucky, you were privy to the first portable Mac on the planet. Ok, it’s not technically a PowerBook, but who’s counting. Well, there is one of the rare beauties on eBay and it is definitely worth a trip down memory lane.

Outbound manufactured an innovative series of laptop computers from December 1991 to December 1992, long before MacOS licensing was available, by signing an agreement with Apple to use the ROM and other internal parts from an existing Apple Macintosh.The Outbound series of notebooks raised the bar on what was expected from a laptop and outperformed Apple’s Portable series, which was the Apple-branded alternative at the time. The Outbound series also featured “swappable” hard drives and standard SIMM slots used in desktop machines, in addition to a “TrackBar” for cursor control, which slides left-to-right and rolls up and down, with buttons on both sides.

More on this wonderful dinosaur can be found on AppleFritter and Low End Mac.

[I was just watching SNL re-runs and “Nick Burns, Your Company’s Computer Guy” with Jimmy Fallon reminded me of this story. “Geez, did that thing come bundled with Frogger?” -Ed]

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