AllThingsD has an interesting story on their site about the Newton and a few specifics on the end of its short life. At the 1997 Worldwide Developer Conference (held the year Steve returned to Apple), Steve was asked about the Newton, and he said, “…if somebody would just make a little thing where you’re connected to the Net at all times, and you’ve got a little keyboard. God, I’d love to buy one.” In what will surprise approximately no one, he went on to describe how he hated the stylus, calling it a “little scribble thing.”
Another tidbit came to light when Sculley mentioned how the Newton’s technology had carried forward to today. He said, “ARM not only was the key technology behind the Newton, but it eventually became the key technology behind every mobile device in the world today, including the iPhone and the iPad.”
There is more to be had from Sculley’s perspective in an interview he gave the BBC, but the thing I found most interesting was how he kept saying saying Steve was ahead of his time. How the Newton was 15 years too early, and how the horsepower to keep up with laser printers was a year-and-a-half ahead of when Steve initially released the Desktop Publishing applications.
For a bit of fun, check out how the Newton MessagePad 120 compares to an iPhone or iPad. To find out for yourself what Steve said, you can watch the video below.