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On June 1st, 1979, Apple introduced the Modem IIB (Novation CAT), a communications package that extended the power of the Apple II computer by allowing for the transfer of programs over the telephone network. Priced at $199.95, the Modem IIB was a revolutionary device for its time, providing users with the ability to connect to remote databases and process information in real-time.
One of the key features of the Modem IIB was the Apple Portfolio Evaluator program, which gave the Apple II the ability to act as an intelligent terminal. This allowed users to request and process information from remote databases, making the Modem IIB an essential tool for businesses and individuals looking to expand their connectivity options.
The Modem IIB was designed to be easy to use, with no permanent connection or wiring changes required. Connection to the phone system was accomplished by simply placing the telephone handset in position on top of the modem. The device also came with an acoustic coupler (modem) and an optional Apple Communications Interface Card.
Despite its popularity, the Modem IIB was discontinued on December 1, 1981, and today the device is 43 years old. While it may be a relic of the past, the Modem IIB remains an important part of Apple’s history and a testament to the company’s innovative spirit.
Interestingly, there is no information about the difference between the Modem IIA and IIB versions of the Apple modem. It is still a mystery why Apple never explained the difference between these two modems.
Apple Modem IIB Details
|Introduced||June 1, 1979|
|Discontinued||December 1, 1981|
|Model Number||A2M0021 (Modem IIB only)|
A2M0017 (Modem IIB with Interface)
|Original Price||$199.95 (Modem IIB only)|
$390 (Modem IIB with Interface)
- Apple II computer
|Connection||1 – Serial|
How Does Acoustic Coupler Work?
Further Reading and References
- Novation CAT – Wikipedia
- Echo Manuals For Apple II Computers (PDF) – Mirrors Apple 2
- Scanapalooza! – Apple II History
- Hitting the Books: What life on the internet was like at 300 bits per second – Engadget
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Last updated: March 7, 2023