Five technologies made popular by Apple

Thanks to Apple, these technologies have become part of everyday life.

Apple (almost) inventions

Apple (almost) inventions

Apple has a way of taking cool ideas, improving upon them and sending its competitors on the chase to play catch up. Here are five examples of technologies that Apple moved to the mainstream -- some of which Apple did not invent.

Laptop Trackpads

Laptop Trackpads

In May of 1994 Apple started shipping its PowerBook 500 series with a two-inch square trackpad. At the time, Apple's trackpad was heralded as a "breakthrough in pointing-device technology." What technology did the trackpad replace?

Mouse

Mouse

Today, a mouse seems as integral to a computer as a keyboard, but before Apple popularized the mouse when it introduced the Mac in 1984, that simply wasn't the case. Which company made the first computer that shipped with a mouse?

GUI

GUI

Much like the mouse, it was Apple who first brought the concept of a graphical user interface to the mainstream when it introduced the Lisa computer in 1983, soon followed by the Mac in 1984. In an interesting piece of Apple history, Apple was first turned onto the idea of a GUI when Steve Jobs and other Apple executives took a tour of Xerox's Palo Alto Research Center in 1979. Which arch rival did Apple sue in 1988 over the use of the GUI?

MultiTouch

MultiTouch

Before Apple introduced the iPhone in 2007, most consumers probably had no idea what multitouch technology was, save perhaps for a small minority of people who may have seen demos of the technology on YouTube. Today, using your fingers to interact with your phone has become the standard. What company did Apple purchase to gain it multitouch technology?

Accelerometer

Accelerometer

Accelerometers have been used in multitudes of ways before Apple ever thought to include one in the iPhone. With hundreds of games and applications made specifically for this feature, it was another of the stand-outs that made the iPhone so insanely popular. What market did Apple overhaul?

USB

USB

Today we use USB ports to hook up all sorts of devices to our computers, but it wasn't until Apple released the 1998 iMac that USB as a defacto standard began to take shape. What did the USB replace?