Apple Records was founded by the four members of the world’s greatest music band, The Beatles. They took offence to Jobs and Wozniak naming their company Apple Computers and filed a lawsuit in 1978.
However, the dispute was soon settled with the condition that the computer manufacturer would stay out of the music business. This meant that Apple couldn’t even provide sound on their computers.
Imagine that! “Imagine all the people living” with dumb computers!
The arrangement didn’t last long and Apple Records sued again when Apple included a sound chip on their computers. And then once again in 2003 when the Tunes Music Store and the iPod were launched. This time the court ruled in favour of Apple Computers.
Apple enters the music industry
Apple Inc. was now in the music business in a big way. The iTunes Store had made it the biggest music vendor in the world and the iPod became the largest selling music player of all time. Even so, the iTunes Store didn’t carry any songs of The Beatles, the most successful music group in history.
A major settlement was reached in 2007 under which Apple Inc. bought all the trademarks related to “Apple”. They agreed to license some of these back to the record company. On 16th of November 2010, Apple released the entire Beatles catalog on their online music store.
Another interesting fact is that the Apple alert sound was named Sosumi as a result of the lawsuit between the two companies.