PowerBooks & iBooks

PowerBook 500 Series

code name: Blackbird

Blackbird was Apple's code name for a new line of PowerBooks based on the 68LC040 processor. (The LC version of the 68040 draws less power and has no FPU.) These PowerBooks introduced a full-sized keyboard (with 12 function keys), replaced the trackball with a trackpad, had a 640 x 480 screen, and even had stereo speakers built into the lid. They were also designed so they could later be upgraded with a PowerPC processor.

PowerBook 550c (copyright raneko, used by permission)
The PowerBook 550c (image ©raneko)

These were a big hit since they were the first notebook computers from any manufacturer with any of these features: a trackpad, built-in ethernet, 16-bit stereo sound, stereo speakers, an internal expansion bay, and auto-sleep when the lid was closed. In the field, users raved about the dual battery slots, allowing up to 4 hours from a charged pair of batteries.

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