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Moving away from disk drives

With the iPhone 5S, which hits store shelves Friday, Apple is bringing a fingerprint reader to its smartphone for the first time. It's not the first time, though, that Apple has taken a bold step forward.

For instance: Apple was first to move away from 5.25-inch floppy disks for desktop computers, setting the standard of the 3.5-inch disk. Later, when Apple dropped the 3.5-inch disk, moving away from floppy disks altogether with the iMac, everyone else similarly followed suit.

Updated:Caption:Photo:George Chernilevsky
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Laserwriter printer

When Apple released the original LaserWriter desktop printer in 1985, it was a remarkable innovation that brought printing to the home for the first time at an affordable price.
Updated:Caption:Photo:All About Apple museum
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Aldus Pagemaker

Aldus' PageMaker desktop publishing software was released in July 1985. Paired with the Apple LaserWriter, a PostScript laser printer, Apple introduced the home desktop publishing platform that was quickly adopted by the rest of the industry.
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Multi-touch technology began in 1982, when the University of Toronto's Input Research Group developed the first human-input multi-touch system, but it wasn't until the iPhone's widespread adoption in 2007 that gesture controls like this became commonplace. Soon, almost every consumer electronics producer had developed products with multi-touch controls.
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Newton PDA

Apple's design ethos has advanced a bit since the original Newton, pictured here. When Newton's successor to Newton, the iPad was launched, it ignited an entire new category of gadget, and just about everyone jumped on board.
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Before 2007, most mobile phones were just phones, but after Apple released the iPhone, the smartphone market was suddenly a whole new place.
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Touch ID

And now, with the 2013 arrival of the iPhone 5S, Apple has introduced the Touch ID fingerprint scanner. We'll soon see if other phone makers are ready and willing to give fingerprint tech a whirl as well.
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