Apple Computer, Inc., which long has resisted cloning of its machines, is now actively looking for partners to license the unique Macintosh design. The idea is to significantly increase Macintosh's installed base—now estimated at over 7 million—by having several firms manufacture and market compatible units. Initially, annual sales may go up by as many as 500,000 units.
Apple stands to profit not only by licensing the design, but also by providing its special components and boards to licensees. As the product opens up, Apple also hopes to increase the overall number of applications packages available to Macintosh users.