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TelePort and PowerPort modems
Back in the early through to late 1990s Apple computers weren’t as ubiquitous as they are now. If you had a Mac back then you were struggling to find compatible peripherals, you shopped at Mac specialists and often used specialist brand products.
In the case of sending a fax, dialing into a bulletin board or using an early Internet dial-up connection you would have used a modem by Global Village PowerPort card that plugged into your PowerBook or an external TelePort modem. I remember that the company used to have picture of a elven-looking alien on the front of the box and the PowerPort card.
Apple vendors back then had weird little brand touches that reminded you despite their hard yuppie price-gouging exteriors they were just as kooky as you were for ignoring the products of Microsoft. And Global Village with their TelePort and PowerPort modem were no exception.
The TelePort modem was made in a platinum grey colour to match Apple’s desktop products at the time.
To add to the confusion of PowerPort card users the modems were controlled by software called TelePort as well. This made it remarkably easy to deal with your modem settings in comparison to using Windows PCs with problematic DLLs and everything else.
There was also a software application for sending faxes called Global Fax and a simple OCR software bundled later on called Global Fax OCR. The modem usually came bundled with software to sign you up to an ISP (in the UK I think it was Demon and Clara.net). My first iBook came with a built in modem and broadband started getting rolled out, so Global Village was eventually bought out by a company called Zoom who are still struggling along by selling directly to the consumer DSL routers and 3G dongles. More related posts here.