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The IBM 5150 was the beginning of the Personal Computer as we know it today. It was launched in 1981 to try and capture part of the personal computer market that companies like Apple Computers were already beginning to master. Previously IBM had only made proprietary mainframe computers for the big business markets and the launch of the IBM PC flagged a very significant departure from these proprietary architectures to one based on 'off the shelf' components. This, with hindsight, would eventually prove to be a disastrous decision for IBM opening the way for the 'attack of the clones' - Computers that were 100% IBM Compatible and 70% of the price.
The IBM PC had two variants, the type A variant with a 16/64k motherboard and the type B variant with a 64/256k motherboard. The Type B was marked with a 'B' inside a circle painted on the black enamel metal on the back.
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This exhibit has a reference ID of CH229. Please quote this reference ID in any communication with the Centre for Computing History.