Apple Operating System (OS) Strategy and Roadmap

Strategy Delivers Compatibility with Currently Shipping Mac Systems and Applications, Accelerates Delivery of Next-Generation Software, and Provides Smooth Migration to Next-Generation OS

WWDC, San Jose, Calif.--May 13, 1997--As announced at Macworld San Francisco in January, Apple Computer, Inc. plans to implement a strategy in which the Company will continue to deliver significant and regularly scheduled upgrades to the current Mac OS while accelerating development of a new and advanced operating system. The new operating system is code-named Rhapsody and will be based on the merging of technologies from Apple and NeXT Software, Inc. As well as providing pioneering next generation technology, Rhapsody aims to provide strong backward compatibility for Mac OS software offering current customers a smooth migration path to the new OS.

Through this approach, the Company expects to provide customers and developers with a platform for exceptional and cutting-edge applications, while enhancing their current investment in the Mac OS. Apple also believes that the advanced technical underpinnings and rapid development environment of Rhapsody the Yellow Box will allow developers to create new applications that leapfrog those of other high end operating systems. Additionally, the Company anticipates that the scheduled enhancements to the Mac OS will retain its industry leadership in ease of use and multimedia, while further strengthening the software's Internet capabilities.

The first release of Rhapsody is expected to be launched to developers in mid to late 1997 with customer releases of the operating system following in 1998. Rhapsody is planned to incorporate features such as preemptive multitasking and protected memory, based on a Mach kernel. It will also include a new Yellow Box Application Programming Interface (API) based on NeXT Software's OPENSTEP environment. In parallel Mac OS continues to evolve with a significant upgrade, Mac OS 8, scheduled to be shipped in July 1997.

Roadmap Shows Complementary Approach

Apples OS strategy offers two complementary product lines moving forward Mac OS and Rhapsody. Customers in each of Apples markets can migrate to Apples next generation OS, Rhapsody, at their own speed. Apple anticipates many customers will remain on Mac OS for a number of years and the company intends to continue to upgrade this track of the OS in regular upgrades.

Mac OS Roadmap

Apple is currently shipping Mac OS 7.6.1. Mac OS 8, expected to be launched in July 1997, will continue to improve the overall ease of use of the Mac and offer leading Internet integration. Mac OS 8 is planned to include a new PowerPC-native multi-threaded Finder. This will allow customers to execute multiple tasks, such as launching applications and copying files, at the same time. Mac OS 8 includes a new 3D appearance and other user interface enhancements. In the Internet area, Mac OS 8 integrates Mac OS Runtime for Java and personal web sharing, permitting every Macintosh or Mac OS compatible to be an Internet web server.

Future slated revisions of Mac OS include Allegro, anticipated in mid 1998 and following that Sonata, scheduled in 1999.

Rhapsody Roadmap

The roadmap for Apples next generation OS, Rhapsody, is as follows:

Apple Computer, Inc., a recognized innovator in the information industry and leader in multimedia technologies, creates powerful solutions based on easy-to-use personal computers, servers, peripherals, software, personal digital assistants and Internet content. Headquartered in Cupertino, California, Apple develops, manufactures, licenses and markets solutions, products, technologies and services for business, education, consumer, entertainment, scientific and engineering and government customers in more than 140 countries.

Press Information Contact:
Russell Brady
Apple Computer, Inc.
(408) 974-6877

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