Franklin Computer Corporation
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Franklin Computer Corporation, today known as
Franklin Electronic Publishers, Inc. (FEP),
is an American electronics manufacturer, founded in 1981 and currently
based in Burlington, New Jersey (USA).
Since the mid-1980s, it produced a range
of hand-held electronic devices, such as spelling correctors, dictionaries,
translation devices, word games and medical references .
The company is also known for the manufacturing of clones of the
Apple II series computer, the first of which was marketed in 1982.
Apart from the hardware, the company also copied Apple's operating system,
arguing that software was not subject to copyright since it was not printed.
Franklin eventually lost the case against Apple and had to abandon
production of the clones .
After losing the sawsuit from Apple, the company filed for bankruptcy
and reduced its workforce from 275 to 100 employees. Nevertheless, it
kept producing Apple clones – and later also IBM PC clones – for several
years, until Apple pushed them out of the desktop marked around 1989.
It then concentrated on its hand-held product line which had been
introduced in 1986.
In 2009 the company was taken off the American Stock Exchange and
outsourced its entire research and development (R&D) to Hong Kong.
Later that year, it was merged with Saunders Acquisition Corporation .
At the hight of its success, the company employed 450 employees.
Franklin products on this website
1981Founded as Franklin Computer Corporation
1982Franklin ACE 100 (Apple II clone), Franklin ACE 1000 (Apple II Plus clone)
Sued by Apple
1983Lost case against Apple
1984Reorganisation (workforce reduced from 275 to 100)
1985Franklin ACE 2000 (Apple IIe clone)
Franklin ACE 500 (Apple IIc clone)
1986Franklin PC6000 (IBM clone)
Spelling ACE (hand-held refrence design)
1988Franklin PC8000 (IBM clone)
Acquisition of Proximity Technology
1989Abandonning of the desktop market
Electronic version of the Bible
Renamed Franklin Electronic Publishers (FEP)
1995Bookman product line
2009R&D outsourced to Hong Kong
Taken off the American Stock Exchange
Merged with Saunders Acquisition Corporation
ACE 100Apple II clone
ACE 1000Apple II Plus clone
ACE 1200Same as ACE 1000, but with two built-in 5¼" floppy drives
ACE 80Zilog Z80 processor card
Portable Apple II clone 1
ACE 2000Apple IIe clone
ACE 2100With additional RAM
ACE 2200With detached keyboard and dual internal floppy
PC-6000PC clone with 8088 (4.77 MHz) 512K RAM, single floppy
PC-8000PC clone with 8088 (4.77 MHz) 640K RAM, dual floppy
Spelling ACE80,000 word spell checker 2
Language MasterSpelling corrector, dictionary, thesaurus
Word WizLexicon, words games, text encryptor
SpellMasterSpelling checker, word games, text encryptor
BookmanElectronic book with plug-ins
REX 5000Personal digital assistent (later sold to Xircom)
PageMarkJapanese-English dictionary (sold via Seiko)
eBookManeBook variant of BookMan
Cancelled due to bankruptcy in 1984.
Using technology from Proximity Technology.
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© Crypto Museum. Created: Friday 22 July 2022. Last changed: Tuesday, 26 July 2022 - 12:40 CET.