With that motto, Apple proclaimed that the new machine was a testament to the company's long-standing commitment to the Apple II series and its users, despite the recent introduction of the Macintosh. The IIc was also seen as the company's answer to the new IBM PCjr, with Apple hoping to sell 400,000 by the end of 1984. Although it was essentially an Apple IIe computer in a smaller body, it was not a successor, but rather a portable version of complement it.
An Apple II machine would be sold for users who needed slot expandability, and another for those who wanted the simplicity of a plug-and-play machine with portability in mind.
The Apple IIc had a built-in 5.25-inch floppy drive (140 KB) on the right side of the case, the first Apple II model to feature such a feature.
On the left side of the case was a dial to control the volume of the internal speaker, along with an 1⁄8-inch mono audio jack for headphones or an external speaker.
A fold-out carry handle doubled as a way to support the back of the machine to angle the keyboard for typing, if desired.
The keyboard layout mirrored that of the Apple IIe; however, the "Reset" key was moved above the "Esc" key.
There were also two toggle switches in the same area: an "80/40" column switch for (specially written) software to detect which text video mode to boot into, and a "Keyboard" switch to choose between QWERTY and Dvorak format - or between US and national layout on non-US machines.
The keyboard itself was built into the front half of the case, just like a notebook computer, and early models had a rubber mat under the keycaps that acted as a protection against liquid leakage.