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1994 spoof Apple press release about Steve’s return

Posted by / November 15, 2011


Many people have asked me to post the spoof that I wrote in 1994 about Apple buying NeXT and Steve returning to Apple. The resurgence in interest is because it’s mentioned in the Steve Jobs biography. This post appeared in the November, 1994 edition of Macworld. To tell you the truth, I forgot that I wrote it. Anyway, I hope you enjoy it!

Steve Jobs to Return as Apple CEO
The Father of Macintosh brings back the vision. Spindler is COO.

The following press release moved over PR newswire on Monday, September 31, 1994, at 8:32 a.m., EST.

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE. Contact: Regis Makaha, Apple Computer, Inc.; (408) 996-1010, AppleLink: uni.wish.

CUPERTINO, Calif.–September 31, 1994–The board of directors of Apple Computer, Inc., today announced that Steve Jobs, the cofounder of Apple who was purged by John Sculley in 1986, will return to Apple as chief executive officer and chief technical officer.

Steve Jobs is currently the president of Next, Inc. In his new position, he will be responsible for the overall direction and vision of Apple Computer. Michael Spindler, currently chief executive officer, will relinquish this post and become chief operating officer of Apple Computer.

As a cofounder of Apple and the father of Macintosh, Jobs brings back to Apple the type of visionary leadership that enabled Apple to create three of the four personal computer standards (Apple II, Macintosh, and Windows). In addition, because of his experience at Next, he is expected to bring a newfound sense of humility back to Apple Computer.

“Returning to Apple has been a seductive option for me ever since John decided to concentrate his technical prowess on cellular phone technology,” said Jobs from the Redwood City, Calif., headquarters of Next. “At first I dismissed the idea when the Apple board contacted me. However, because I’m now a father, I needed a steadier source of income.”

Board member Michael Markula describes the recruitment process, “Basically, we challenged Steve: ‘Do you want to spend the rest of your life selling Unix with a sugarcoating, or change the world?’ When we presented it this way, Steve reacted positively to our pitch.”

“Who were we trying to kid?” asked Michael Spindler. “I am not a product visionary, and I don’t want to be. My strength is fiscally responsible management and providing a reality check. Plus, I was tired of product managers complaining when I demonstrated their products. Steve can do this better than anyone. We’ll soon be completing each other’s sentences like Steve and John used to.”

Referring to Steve Jobs’s widely reported largesse toward early Macintosh Division employees, a spokesperson for Odwalla Juices said, “Our period of greatest profitability occurred when Steve ran the Macintosh Division. We see a tremendous opportunity to reenter the corporate market for fresh orange juice.” A spokesperson for the new, employee-owned United Airlines chimed in, “When we heard the news, we called Boeing and doubled the number of first-class seats for the planes we had on order.”

Bill Gates, chief executive officer of Microsoft, offered his support of Jobs’s return, “Macintosh always has been and always will be a big part of our applications software business, and Apple is the preeminent R&D site for Microsoft system software. We believe Steve will revitalize Apple’s work in system software and provide us something to copy for the next 10 to 20 years. Expect to see examples of Steve’s vision in our next version of Windows, code-named Cleveland.”

The Apple board also announced that it was buying Next’s assets for $200 million. The intent is to fold Next Step’s object-oriented programmability into future versions of the Macintosh operating system. John Warnock, CEO of Adobe Systems, commented, “With Steve’s return, we foresee a close relationship with Apple, resulting in an unbelievably lucrative royalty stream for Display PostScript.”

In addition to the source code of Next Step, as consideration for buying Next, Apple will receive 4,000,000 laser-printer toner cartridges from Canon, and Ross Perot will appear in a series of 30-minute PowerBook infomercials–complete with QuickTime-animated flip charts.

Headquartered in Cupertino, Calif., Apple Computer, Inc. (NASDAQ: AAPL) develops, manufactures, and markets too many personal computer models; a handful of personal interactive electronic systems; and ClarisWorks. Apple hardware is sold for use in desktop publishing, desktop publishing, and desktop publishing. A recognized pioneer and innovator (as opposed to imitator) in the personal computer industry, Apple sells its products in more than 120 countries and provides support in less than 10.


Guy Kawasaki’s fantasies are his own and only sporadically reflect those of Macworld. His latest book is Hindsights (Beyond Words Publishing, 1994). He has investments in Bit Jugglers, Global Village Communication, Bookmaker Corporation, and others. He can be reached at [email protected].

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