January 5, 1999: Corporate Towers Go Translucent

After Apple revealed the original iMac with its gumdrop and clear consumer aspirations, Mac fans were wondering what Apple would do with pro level computers. It was widely feared that the Towers would be replaced with something that looked too radical for offices and other professional environments.

When the new Towers were revealed the reaction was mixed. The towers kept the upright form factor but wrapped the internals up in a white and blue cleverly designed case. Most of the misgivings over the radically different color scheme were quickly forgotten as pro level users discovered just how easy the case made the process of internal upgrades. Like the original iMac, the PowerMac G3 jettisoned the floppy drive, but unlike the iMac it was the first Mac to use copper CPU technology. Other interesting changes were the inclusion of a FireWire port and an ADB port to cater to the pro users.

The new G3 Tower was a masterstroke of design and Apple’s pro line used the same basic design with fairly minor changes until the G5 towers were introduced. People got their first glimpse of what would become a long-running Apple standard on January 5, 1999.