iMac launches Saturday

Rumours of the Mac’s death may have been greatly exaggerated, if early interest in the struggling company’s new iMac is any indication. According to Apple, there are already more than 150,000 advance orders for the new desktop computer, which hits the stores this Saturday.

Resembling the reborn Volkswagen Beetle in both appearance and pre-launch interest, the iMac comes with a 56k modem and a huge bundle of consumer software, including AppleWorks, FaxSTF, Quicken Deluxe ’98, Kai’s Photo Soap, Microsoft’s Internet Explorer 4.01 and Outlook Express, and many more titles.

“The iMac will deliver the best and easiest-to-use Internet experience, tons of great consumer software, a variety of great add-on peripherals, and, yes, a high-speed 56K modem,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s interim CEO.

More than 200 new products for Macintosh have been announced since iMac was introduced on May 6. Leading consumer software vendors are recommitting to the Macintosh with new titles spanning games, web page development, productivity and learning.

Earthlink will be the exclusive iMac Internet access provider. Users will receive one month of Internet service free, but will not access any iMaspecific site through the new Apple computers.