The 20th Anniversary Mac (1997)
Apple was a far more nostalgic company in 1997 than it is today, and this was perhaps most obvious from its attempt to create a premium, luxury computer designed solely to mark the date of the company’s 20th anniversary.
The 20th Anniversary Macintosh was an impressive piece of technology, designed with an attempt at style that wasn’t seen on many other computers of the day. It was the first Mac with a flat-screen LCD, and also packed in a custom Bose sound system, an FM radio, a TV tuner, a CD-ROM drive, and even leather palm rests.
This was a limited-run special edition computer, and it carried a hefty price tag to match. At $7,499 (~$12,800 today), it didn’t get much uptake, even with a direct-to-door concierge delivery service included. Apple only made about 12,000 of these, but it had a hard time selling even those, and was forced to drop the price to $3,500 and then down to $1,995 a year later to try to clear out the last of its stock.
Even though many heralded the iPhone X as the “10th Anniversary iPhone,” it’s important to keep in mind that Apple never said any such thing about the device. Today it’s a company that looks forward, and not back, and it’s unlikely we’ll ever see another attempt at an “anniversary” product.