Despite Apple’s resounding success on virtually every device it releases, the company has never been a permanent success story in the past.
One of his biggest failures came with his video console Pippin in 1995 , where many people say that thanks to this failure, they begged Steve Jobs to return to the company.
Actually the video game console was designed by Apple but manufactured by Bandai, that is, Apple provided the hardware, but wanted another company to distribute it under its own brand. The “winner” was Bandai .
The concept was basically a “cheap” computer for all audiences, although it was used as a video console that was potentially superior to the original Play Station . But it came late and with a very high price.
Pippin was well ahead of his time
The console that from Apple had everything that a console of today incorporates in a basic way. It could connect to the Internet , some very futuristic controls and even a joystick quite interesting for its time (of which more than consoles were made).
Inside we found a 32-bit PowerPC 603e 66MHz processor, a limited macOS version, a 4x CD-ROM drive, a 14,400 bps modem and two colors available, white for Japan and black for the United States.
It had about 30 titles created by Bandai, with games like Dragon Ball, Power Rangers or Sailor Moon . It also included a web browser and even an encyclopedia (in the late 90’s they were very popular).
The launch had a tragic fate in a short time, less than two years to be precise. Two years where the hardware was updated three times, but it was not enough to attract the attention of the users. Much less for its price, 599 dollars at the time.
42,000 units were sold of the 100,000 planned. Even selling the 100,000 units, it would become a failure. Nintendo’s Virtual Boy had about 770,000 units sold, making it one of Nintendo’s biggest failures.
He was late and bad, but thanks to that, Jobs is back
Steve Jobs at the presentation of the first iPod
It came at a time when Play Station from Sony, Nintendo 64 or Sega with Saturn were beginning to stand out in the market with a lower price and with a much wider and newer catalogue of games.
Two years after its failed launch, Apple reached out to Steve Jobs to get him back into the company to try and save it from all the technological failures it was dragging along.
Shortly afterwards, Steve Jobs eliminated practically all of Apple’s catalogue (printers, cameras, PDAs…) in order to develop the iPod and iMac . Thanks to this, the company began to raise its head very quickly, completely forgetting the failure of Pippin.
Pippin was considered to be one of the greatest failures in the history of game consoles . Now there is a market for it, but they are sold as a collector’s item.
Now Apple does not sell video consoles as such, but they do offer and boast the largest catalog of mobile games in App Store , where the Apple TV is taking a big role to spend an afternoon of glory with the games offered on iOS and tvOS.
Did you know the history of the Apple console? Do you think Apple should try again with a new concept?