Jobs' marketing skills allowed him to sell the Apple I before they were built by showing parts suppliers that he had advance orders. (Jobs' abilities to negotiate in Silicon Valley more than twenty years later saw him finesse those skills into the first successful legal music download business which now services 70% of the total market, and is said to have revolutionised the music industry which was threatened by illegal downloading.) The profits allowed Jobs and Wozniak to develop what is seen as the commencement of the PC era — the Apple II. This placed into the hands of business and schools a reliable and powerful computer, and allowed the two Steves to formally establish Apple Computer Inc. The success of the Apple II, which generated a series of computers over the next several years with incremental improvements, saw Apple Computer Inc become a public company in 1980, in a share float which was the biggest of its era — and the biggest IPO (Initial Public Offering) since Ford in 1956.
It made more 'instant' millionaires than any company in history (employees were offered shares), and can perhaps be credited with the dot.com boom model: start with manufacturing by hand in a parents' garage, get turned down for loans by banks unsure of the purpose or value of new technologies, find an 'angel' investor (Mark Makkula — a seasoned venture capitalist who approached them when he saw what they were up to), develop quality products that fill an untapped need, and watch as the money rolls in! The Apple II allowed the average person with limited computer knowledge to perform tasks we now take for granted on PCs: word processing, calculations, and spreadsheets. It found a ready home in education, and millions of adults around the world were first exposed to the Apple II.