The best books to learn about Steve Jobs and the history of Apple Inc.

Who am I?

I’m a programming book author, software developer, podcaster, and computer science professor at a teaching college. But I’ve also always been a devoted fan of Apple Inc. and deeply interested in its history. I’ve read more than two dozen books about Apple so you can just read the best ones. If five books are not enough for you, and you want to dig deeper into books about Apple and Steve Jobs, you can check out my blog post on my website.


I wrote...

Classic Computer Science Problems in Java

By David Kopec,

Book cover of Classic Computer Science Problems in Java

What is my book about?

Sharpen your coding skills by exploring established computer science problems! Classic Computer Science Problems in Java challenges you with time-tested scenarios and algorithms. You’ll work through a series of exercises based on computer science fundamentals that are designed to improve your software development abilities, improve your understanding of artificial intelligence, and even prepare you to ace an interview. As you work through examples in search, clustering, graphs, and more, you'll remember important things you've forgotten and discover classic solutions to your "new" problems!

The books I picked & why

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Return to the Little Kingdom: Steve Jobs and the Creation of Apple

By Michael Moritz,

Book cover of Return to the Little Kingdom: Steve Jobs and the Creation of Apple

Why this book?

I read this book after I had read many others about Apple, but if I could do it over again, I would start here. This is the single best book about Apple’s early history from its founding in 1976 until the release of the Macintosh in 1984. When I’m learning something, I always find it valuable to start from the beginning. You’ll need more than just this book though because the material in it covering post-1984 Apple is cursory at best.

Return to the Little Kingdom: Steve Jobs and the Creation of Apple

By Michael Moritz,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Return to the Little Kingdom as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In 1984, The Little Kingdom: The Private Story of Apple Computer told the story of Apple's first decade alongside the histories of Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak. Now, completely revised and expanded, Return to the Little Kingdom is the definitive biography of Apple and its founders from the very beginning. Moritz brings readers inside the childhood homes of Jobs and Wozniak and records how they dropped out of college and founded Apple in 1976. He follows the fortunes of the company through the mid-1980s, and in new material, tracks the development of Apple to the present and offers an insider?s…


Steve Jobs

By Walter Isaacson,

Book cover of Steve Jobs

Why this book?

This is the authorized Steve Jobs biography, which came out shortly after his death in 2011. There’s a reason that it is one of the most widely read business biographies of all time. It is comprehensive, but not all reviewers felt Isaacson fully grasped all of Steve Jobs's accomplishments sufficiently, nor truly captured his character. However, it still tells the general story of Steve Jobs's life well.

Steve Jobs

By Walter Isaacson,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Steve Jobs as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

From bestselling author Walter Isaacson comes the landmark biography of Apple co-founder Steve Jobs. In Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography, Isaacson provides an extraordinary account of Jobs' professional and personal life.

Drawn from three years of exclusive and unprecedented interviews Isaacson has conducted with Jobs as well as extensive interviews with Jobs' family members, key colleagues from Apple and its competitors, Steve Jobs: The Exclusive Biography is the definitive portrait of the greatest innovator of his generation.


Becoming Steve Jobs: The Evolution of a Reckless Upstart Into a Visionary Leader

By Brent Schlender, Rick Tetzeli,

Book cover of Becoming Steve Jobs: The Evolution of a Reckless Upstart Into a Visionary Leader

Why this book?

This biography was almost written as a “response” to the Isaacson book. It better covers the NeXT and Pixar years. In fact, it makes the case that those years in Steve Jobs's life were critical for his later success after returning to Apple. This book should probably be read after the Isaacson book because it’s not as comprehensive as the Isaacson book and provides a different perspective.

Becoming Steve Jobs: The Evolution of a Reckless Upstart Into a Visionary Leader

By Brent Schlender, Rick Tetzeli,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Becoming Steve Jobs as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

THE SUNDAY TIMES AND #1 INTERNATIONAL BESTSELLER - with a new foreword by Silicon Valley legend Marc Andreessen.

'For my money, a better book about Jobs than Walter Isaacson's biography' New Yorker

'A fascinating reinterpretation of the Steve Jobs story' Sunday Times

We all think we know who Steve Jobs was, what made him tick, and what made him succeed.

Yet the single most important question about him has never been answered.

The young, impulsive, egotistical genius was ousted in the mid-80s from the company he founded, exiled from his own kingdom and cast into the wilderness. Yet he returned…


Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company

By Owen W. Linzmayer,

Book cover of Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company

Why this book?

This was one of the first Apple history books that I read when I was a teenager. It primarily covers vignettes from the early years and the non-Jobs era of Apple (1985–1997). I read the first edition, which came out in 1999. It’s valuable because most Apple books tend to concentrate on the Jobs era. I have not read the newer, 2004 edition.

Apple Confidential 2.0: The Definitive History of the World's Most Colorful Company

By Owen W. Linzmayer,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Apple Confidential 2.0 as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Apple Confidential examines the tumultuous history of America's best-known Silicon Valley start-up from its legendary founding almost 30 years ago, through a series of disastrous executive decisions, to its return to profitability, and including Apple's recent move into the music business. Linzmayer digs into forgotten archives and interviews the key players to give readers the real story of Apple Computer, Inc. This updated and expanded edition includes tons of new photos, timelines, and charts, as well as coverage of new lawsuit battles, updates on former Apple executives, and new chapters on Steve Wozniak and Pixar.


iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It

By Steve Wozniak, Gina Smith,

Book cover of iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It

Why this book?

I feel like it would be crazy to not read a book by a cofounder when you want to learn about the history of a company. Steve Wozniak’s autobiography chiefly focuses on his early life and his years at Apple. The writing style is very basic—with a quite simple sentence structure throughout. Perhaps that’s because this book was positioned to be attractive to both children and adults. But this is the only book written by one of Apple’s cofounders and iWoz has a very positive, inspirational message.

iWoz: Computer Geek to Cult Icon: How I Invented the Personal Computer, Co-Founded Apple, and Had Fun Doing It

By Steve Wozniak, Gina Smith,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked iWoz as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Before slim laptops that fit into briefcases, computers looked like strange vending machines, with cryptic switches and pages of encoded output. But in 1977 Steve Wozniak revolutionized the computer industry with his invention of the first personal computer. As the sole inventor of the Apple I and II computers, Wozniak has enjoyed wealth, fame, and the most coveted awards an engineer can receive, and he tells his story here for the first time.


3 book lists we think you will like!

Interested in Apple computer history, Steve Jobs, and Apple Inc.?

7,000+ authors have recommended their favorite books and what they love about them. Browse their picks for the best books about Apple computer history, Steve Jobs, and Apple Inc..

Apple Computer History Explore 5 books about Apple computer history
Steve Jobs Explore 11 books about Steve Jobs
Apple Inc. Explore 6 books about Apple Inc.

And, 3 books we think you will enjoy!

We think you will like The Wright Brothers, They Made America, and The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin if you like this list.