And the results of that praise have shown, from huge sales numbers and a lofty share price to the rock-star status of its former and current CEOs, Steve Jobs and Tim Cook.
Apple's revenue for its latest full fiscal year ended in September came in at an all-time high of $182.8 billion, up almost 7% from $170.9 billion in fiscal 2013. Since the iPod was introduced in 2001, revenue has risen more than 3,000% and more than 600% since the iPhone was introduced in fiscal 2007.
As Apple's track record of innovation strengthened, so did its sales and its stock price. Since the iPod launch, shares of Apple have soared 9,232%, compared with a 88.3% gain in the S&P 500.
From hordes of Steve Jobs fans to the Tim Cook obsessed, the most surprising sign of Apple's success has been the world's reaction to its CEOs. For instance, when Jobs passed away in 2011 from cancer, fans took to the Internet to lament the loss of their idol and pay homage to what he left behind. Cook has also inspired millions, particularly when he officially came out as the first and only openly gay CEO of a Fortune 500 company. Both Jobs and Cook have become household names.
Despite all of that, not everything Apple has created turned to gold.
Outside of products like the iPhone, iPad and iPod have come products that Apple may have liked to have back, such as its infamous
that came with the iMac in 1998. Its small size and awkward grip added to its unpopularity, and Apple replaced the mouse two years later with the
. But don't worry, the sporty mouse can still be purchased on
for as low as
From the Portable Macintosh to the iPod U2 Special Edition, here are 10 products that Apple would probably like for you to forget:
Apple Lisa - 1983
As far as 1980s technology goes, Apple Lisa might have had it all and then some, because it was the first personal computer to have a mouse and graphical user interface built in. But its incredibly high price tag of $9,995 kept it from ever being popular. To put that number into some perspective, the almost $10,000 price tag would be roughly $23,950 today.
Macintosh Portable - 1989
After sharing its first cover photo-shoot with a swimsuit clad model, the Macintosh Portable seemed to be off to a swimming success, but luck wouldn't be on its side, and Apple's first attempt at making a portable computer sank to the bottom. Weighing a whopping 16 pounds, the Macintosh Portable didn't seem to be all that portable and wouldn't run without a charged battery.
The device sold for $6,500 at the time of its release.
Newton MessagePad - 1993
In 1992, no one owned a personal digital assistant (PDA), but that didn't stop then CEO John Sculley from coining the term and prematurely announcing the company's intention to design its own. That May, Sculley once again spoke of Apple's PDA and brought one called Newton to show crowds. Unfortunately for him, its battery was dead, and he had to scramble to find another one to use as a demonstration.
People freaked out over the new device and were ready to get their hands on it, but Sculley neglected to mention the device was nowhere near ready to hit the shelves. The Newton wouldn't be released until more than a year later in August 1993.
Along with some processing failures, the Newton was known for being difficult to use and was even parodied on an episode of The Simpsons.
Steve Jobs cut the device and its several incarnations when he returned to Apple in 1997.
At the time of its release, the Newton was projected to sell a million units, but Apple sold only 50,000 units in its first three months on the market. It cost $699.
Macintosh TV - 1993
Only 10,000 Mac TVs were made before the product was discontinued, just four months after its release to consumers.
Equipped with a mouse and keyboard, the Macintosh TV was a combination of a computer and a television, and consumers were unimpressed.
Many complained that the Macintosh TV was too much of an "either or" device. Users could watch television, yes, but that meant they couldn't access the computing side of this computer. They also complained that the computer was very limited in its storage, with only 8 megabytes of maximum RAM. The LC 520, which was the foundational computer for the Macintosh TV, could support up to 36 megabytes of RAM storage.
QuickTake - 1994
It was the first consumer digital camera and regarded by many as ahead of its time, but unfortunately for Apple, its QuickTake camera was just that-- ahead of its time. The camera stayed on the market for three years before Apple pulled it from its shelves.
Although often forgotten to history, the Apple QuickTake, which was actually developed by Kodak, helped to lead the way for consumer-focused photography, but again it is forgotten to history and therefore one of Apple's flops.
The QuickTake cost $749 when it was released.
Pippin - 1996
Pippin was meant to be Apple's chance to break into the gaming community, but in a market dominated by Sega and Nintendo (NTDOY) , Apple couldn't make much headwind with its lackluster device. The game console's biggest problem was its game selection, as the device only had a selection of 22 games for people to choose from.
Originally priced at $599, Pippin is rumored to have sold only 42,000 units out of the estimated 100,000 that were built.
20th Anniversary Macintosh - 1997
When Apple released its Twentieth Anniversary Macintosh, or TAM, it featured an unconventional design to say the least. The TAM was not only a computer but also had a built-in television, FM tuner and Bose subwoofer.
The TAM cost a whopping $7,499, and was sold in only six countries -- U.S., Japan, France, Germany and the United Kingdom with a limited number sent to Australia. Only 12,000 TAMs were made, and 11,601 were actually released to the public, with the remaining staying with Apple to be used for spare parts.
Power Mac G4 Cube - 2000
The Power Mac G4 Cube is widely considered one of Apple's biggest flops, and even the company admitted the device disappointed, saying the demand was only one-third of what it expected.
There are multiple reasons why the Cube failed to impress consumers, but the two that make the most sense were its high price tag and cosmetic errors. The lowest-priced Cube cost $1,799, compared with the Power Mac G4 tower that was almost identical in features and cost $200 less. Although the Cube looked beautiful, it didn't actually meet functionality tests, cracking easily and overheating often because it had no external cooling fan.
Apple stopped production of the Cube just a month shy of its one-year birthday.
Flower Power and Blue Dalmatian iMac - 2001
The iMac G3 was offered in a variety of colors throughout its lifespan -- Bondi Blue, Blueberry, Strawberry, Lime, Sage and many more -- but the two colors that continue to bewilder Apple lovers everywhere were Flower Power and Blue Dalmatian.
The new colors, whose techniques took Apple 18 months to fix, were highly criticized for being ugly. And unfortunately for Apple, the iMac underneath the 1960s exterior was as reliable as always, but consumers just couldn't get past how unseemly the computers appeared.
As commenter ericdelangen wrote in an Apple forum, "I'd consider getting one solely because it's so hideous. Could become a collector's item... or something."
iPod U2 Special edition - 2004
When Apple released its iPod U2 Special Edition in 2004, many were left asking, "So what?" The iPod was essentially the same as the 20 gigabyte white iPod, except it cost $50 more, was black with a red scroll wheel and had the signatures of the U2 band members on the back. But the iPod did come with a U2 poster, and $50 coupon to download The Complete U2, which sold for $150 at the time.
This proved to be just the first time Apple's relationship with U2 would leave consumers confused.