Steve Jobs Seemingly Predicted iPad in Rare 1983 Recording

Steve Job's title of a visionary was cemented when he correctly predicted the rise of the tablet market before the millennium arrived, which was spearheaded by Apple's own iPad. A recently discovered recording has now revealed that Jobs predicted the inception of the iPad all the way back in 1983.

Marcel Brown posted the audio to his Life, Liberty and Technology site relating to Steve Jobs' full speech from the International Design Conference in Aspen, Colorado. While the build of the talk had surfaced back in August, the new audio reveals an extended Q&A, which featured Jobs' thoughts on networking, voice recognition, as well as "an incredibly great computer in a book that you can carry around with you".

Lo and behold, 27 years later and the iPad was released, which led to Apple being the clear market leader of tablets for years, albeit if it has since experienced signs of decrease.

The "book" computer Jobs was referring to would feature a "radio link" in order for it to be able to communicate without being connected to anything else.

While it seems so obvious in the current day and age, Jobs had also said that within a few years consumers would be spending more time interacting with personal computers than with cars.

"He confidently talks about the personal computer being a new medium of communication. Again, this is before networking was commonplace or there was any inkling of the Internet going mainstream. Yet he specifically talks about early e-mail systems and how it is reshaping communication," said Brown.

"He discusses early networking and the mess of different protocols that existed at the time. He predicts that we were about 5 years away from "solving" networking in the office and 10-15 years from solving networking in the home."

Jobs also "matter-of-factly states that when we have portable computers with radio links, people could be walking around anywhere and pick up their e-mail. Again, this is 1983, at least 20 years before the era of mobile computing," he added.

Apple is reportedly working on the iPad mini, with the firm allegedly preparing to announce the revised tablet on October 17. Speculation has also pointed towards a widescreen iPad.

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  • bigdragon
    I seem to recall science fiction writers, directors, and fans also making the exact same predictions. They are hardly unique to Steve Jobs.
  • nbelote
    What about this thing from Star Trek TOS:

    I'm fairly sure it was a computer, and quite wireless.
  • aoneone
    I predict one day that micro chips will be installed underneath each sidewalk... so that when certain glasses or 'augmented' lens are used, virtual signs and valuable information will be visible only through those lens but nothing with the naked eye. Yeah yeah google glasses but I THOUGHT OF IT FIRST 2 years ago. It's not fair..
  • billgatez
    I was going to mention the Star Treck thing but it been done.
  • invisibilian
    just like clinton said a broken clock is right twice a day. it doesn't mean anything.
  • joytech22
    Why is this such a surprise?
    In the 1960's they predicted a computer in every household.

    Jobs' prediction was tens of years after this 1960's prediction and I don't see an article on it but suddenly when a successful someone has said the same thing in a less relevant time it becomes much more popular. -.-
  • thrakazog
    All Jobs really talks about is everything people in the tech industry were working on, or planning, or imagining could be. I think (and it's just my opinion, same as the article) he was talking about the MacBook that they were working on releasing.

    If anything, I think Bill Gates was the one to really predict the iPad in the joint interview he and Steve Jobs did for All Things Digital. I think Jobs had a time of it trying to keep a poker face knowing that Apple was working on what Gates predicted. Check it out....

  • thrakazog
    Hmmm, the link didn't post, lets try it again =P

    Just in case, a copy and paste version =)
  • A Bad Day
    And meanwhile, Xerox was more than happy to sit on the printer marketshare and dismantle their PC research/development team back in the mid-late 70's...
  • luciferano
    A lot of other people predicted this stuff even earlier than 1983. Giving Jobs credit for it for supposedly predicting all of this in 1983 is like saying that Apple had GUIs before Xerox.