In 1975, IBM commissioned consultants to study the market potential of the personal computer. They came back with the conclusion that the market for personal computers was only a few hundred in the entire world, at best. Based on this information, IBM decided to concentrate its efforts on mainframes, where it was already the world leader, and ignore the personal computer market, leaving it to a little upstart company in Cupertino, California, called Apple Computer.
When the Apple computers hit the market and began to sell by the hundreds, and then thousands, IBM got smart fast. IBM did an about-face and decided to plunge into the small computer business. And the company did. IBM came out with a PC that within four years captured more than 50 percent of the world market for smaller computers.
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