Apple Inc is the largest technology company in the world and second largest company in market capitalization. Apple designs and manufactures computer hardware, software, and other consumer electronics, including the ipod, iphone, and ipad.
Steve jobs and Steve Wozniak were friends and both interested in electronics. Wozniak had been dabbling in computer-design for some time when, in 1976, he designed what would become the Apple I. Jobs, who had an eye for the future, insisted that he and Wozniak try to sell the machine, and on April 1, 1976 Apple computer was born. Apple was established by Steve Jobs, Steve Wozniak, and Ronald Wayne to sell the Apple I personal computer kit. Wayne sold his portion of the company to Jobs and Wozniak early in the history of the company. The company began to really take off in 1977 when the Apple II was introduced, the first personal computer to come in a plastic case and include color graphics. The Apple II was an impressive machine at its time. This set Apple apart from its competitors.
The company has been innovative and set industry standards for personal computers from the beginning. Later with the introduction of PowerBooks they began to set standards for laptop computers. Today with their computers, laptops, and other incredibly successful devices such as the ipod, iphone, and ipad they are a force to be reckoned with. In May 2010 Apple's market cap closed the day at $222.12 billion putting it ahead of rival Microsoft Corp. Shares of Apple reached an all time high of $330.26 during 2011's first regular trading session.