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Tim Cook Explains Why Steve Jobs Pulling the First MacBook Air Out of an Envelope Was 'a Huge Moment' for Apple Steve Jobs famously introduced the world to the MacBook Air in 2008.

By Sarah Jackson

Key Takeaways

  • Steve Jobs famously debuted the MacBook Air in 2008 by pulling it out of a manila envelope.
  • Tim Cook said the move "established a characteristic about that device that lives today."
  • The 13-inch MacBook Air is the best-selling laptop in the world today, according to Apple.
AP via Business Insider
Steve Jobs introduced the MacBook Air in 2008.

This article originally appeared on Business Insider.

Tim Cook reflected on one of Apple's most iconic product launches ever in a recent interview.

Steve Jobs famously introduced the world to the MacBook Air in 2008 with a flourish, when he pulled the laptop out of a manila envelope to demonstrate how thin and portable it was.

Apple CEO Cook talked about the moment's significance in an interview with tech YouTuber Marques Brownlee, also known as MKBHD.

"That moment of taking it out of the folder established a characteristic about that device that lives today," Cook said. "The first one, it wasn't about how many people buy it, it was about establishing the foundation."

"It was a huge moment for the company," Cook added.

"It's the world's thinnest notebook," Jobs said while announcing the product in 2008. "It's so thin it even fits inside one of these envelopes that we've all seen floating around the office," he added as he reached for the envelope and opened it to reveal the company's next big thing.

So thin was the laptop that one former Newsweek reporter at the time, Steven Levy, reported losing his device precisely for that reason.

"Levy isn't sure exactly what happened to his review machine, but strongly suspects that it was so thin that it got mixed up with a pile of magazines, which either he or his wife threw out," Wired wrote at the time.

Today, the MacBook Air is one of the world's most popular laptops.

Apple has said the 13-inch MacBook Air is the best-selling laptop in the world, and the 15-inch model is the world's bestselling 15-inch laptop.

The company in March announced a new MacBook Air with Apple's proprietary M3 processing chip.

The 13-inch model of the new MacBook Air measures 0.44 inches wide, while the 15-inch model is 0.45 inches wide, according to Apple. The original MacBook Air from 2008 measured 0.16 inches at its thinnest and 0.76 inches at its thickest.

The company's latest iPad Pro, introduced in May, is actually the thinnest Apple product ever though, with the 11-inch model measuring 5.3 mm, and the 13-inch model coming in at 5.1 mm.

The iPad Pro is the thinnest Apple product to date.

The 2024 iPad Pro is the thinnest Apple product to date. Apple via Business Insider

Cook also touched on other topics in his interview with Brownlee.

Asked about his legacy, Cook said he doesn't pay it much attention and that "legacy is something that is defined by other people."

Cook also spoke about the company's recently unveiled AI, called Apple Intelligence, saying it could mean people actually spend less time on their phones because it could help them complete time-consuming tasks faster.

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