Recording of 1983 Steve Jobs speech reveals Apple was working on iPad, App Store 30 years ago

A rare cassette tape of the late Apple co-founder’s 1983 speech has been unearthed this week

An original cassette tape of a 1983 speech made by late Apple co-founder Steve Jobs has been unearthed, revealing that Apple was thinking about iPads and the app store more than 20 years before they were launched.

The speech, which took place at the International Design Conference in Aspen, has been previously documented, but the Q&A session that followed the speech was left out. Now, tech blogger Marcel Brown has digitized a recording of the speech for the world to hear.

"We are putting a lot of computers out that are made to be used in a standalone mode, one person, one computer," said Jobs. "But it isn't very long before you're going to get a community of users that want to hook them all together. Because ultimately, computers are going to be a tool for communication."

"Apple's strategy is really simple," Jobs continued. "What we want to do is we want to put an incredibly great computer in a book that you can carry around with you and learn how to use in 20 minutes. That's what we want to do and we want to do it this decade. And we really want to do it with a radio link in it so you don't have t hook up to anything and you're in communication with all of these larger databases and other computers."

Jobs' ambitious aim to make a tablet within the 1980s was about 27 years out. Alternatively, Jobs may have been referring to a MacBook, however, as noted by The Next Web, Jobs spoke about mobile pocketable computers.

Jobs also spoke about an idea that would eventually become the App Store. "Where we'll be going in transmitting this stuff electronically over the phone line. So where when you wanna buy a piece of software we'll send tones over the phone to transmit directly from computer to computer, that's what we'll be doing."

Intriguingly, Brown claims that the attendee who gave him the tape of the speech met Steve Jobs at the conference. "During their interaction, Steve Jobs gave him something to put in a time capsule that was buried at the conference. To our knowledge this time capsule has yet to be dug up."

Other highlights of the recording include Jobs prediction that people would soon be spending more time interacting with computers than they do with cars, and his comment that voice recognition is a difficult thing to master. "This stuff is hard," he said.

To listen to the recording, visit Marcel Brown's blog.

See also:

Obama mentions Steve Jobs in acceptance speech Steve Jobs' seven key decisionsSteve Jobs wax figure on display at Madame Tussauds Watch every Steve Jobs 'One more thing'

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Ashleigh Allsopp

Macworld U.K.
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