In the 40 years Apple has been around, its product and the company itself have affected countless lives. And here at Enjoy we are lucky to have countless Apple alums amongst our ranks. From former Geniuses to the guy who helped start the Genius Bar, Ron Johnson.
It takes a milestone like 40 years to look back and tell some stories from the early days. Co-founder of Enjoy and former Creative Director at Apple, Tom Suiter, recounts the early days of naming NeXT which would later join Apple. Here is an excerpt from CNET’s “Apple’s first 40 Years.”
“Steve called me and he said, ‘Hey, I’m starting this new company. It’s an amazing computer for education,'”
“I said, ‘Congrats, it’s great. What are you going to call it?’
Jobs said: ‘Two.’
I said: ‘What do you mean?’
Jobs said: ‘It’s my second company.’
I said: ‘Everybody’s going to go, what happened to one?’
Jobs said: ‘That’s exactly why I’m talking to you. I need some help.’
I said, ‘Let me think about it.'”
That weekend, Suiter flew to Seattle to attend a CD-ROM conference hosted by Microsoft and keynoted by co-founder Bill Gates. “I could not believe how many times he was using ‘next’ in such a positive way. I counted them up and said ‘next’ would be a cool name for a company.”
When Suiter got home on Sunday, he called Jobs and said he had the perfect name for his new company.
“He goes, ‘Hey, what is it?’
I said, ‘It’s NeXT.’ There was like this silence.
Then he said,’ I love it!’
While Tom helped name Steve’s second company, Ron Johnson helped him open his first Apple Store. Ron recalls May 19th, 2001 at 10a.m.
“Thirty minutes before the first store opened, Johnson got a call from Jobs, who asked how many people were in line outside. Johnson told him there were about 50 customers. Unhappy with the low turnout, Jobs said they should’ve marketed the opening — the company sent out an email and press release but hadn’t done any advertising. Johnson assured Jobs folks would show up.
By the time the store opened, there were 1,500 people in line.
“It went from 50 people to 1,500 in a 30-minute period of time,” Johnson said. “It was really fun.”
Both Johnson and Suiter have taken their experiences at Apple and brought them to Enjoy. Customer service is what we breathe, and our design standards are meant to please.
A big congrats to Apple on 40 years of setting the bar.