On Tuesday, June 27th 1972 Atari Inc. was incorporated by Nolan Bushnell, the creator of the Atari name, with the introduction of Pong, which at first was a coin-operated arcade video game. This marked the start of the video game industry and Atari was to become a game system that has shaped pop culture ever since.
By 1976, Atari Inc. was acquired by Warner Communications, who then released their, Video Computer System (VCS). This would later become known as the 2600, thus giving birth to home video game systems.
Atari also released the Atari 400 and 800, which were basically personal computers that utilised the 6502 microprocessor. After first filing with the USPTO, for a patent for their "Data processing system with programmable graphics generator", this was officially filed on January 8th, 1979. Later that same year the Atari 400 and Atari 800 Home Computers made their debut at the Winter Consumer Electronics Show (CES).
Thanks to Sears Department Stores, who made the Atari available to the public, sales were through the roof. The Atari Sentinel System was a computer that was designed in order to test the Atari 400 and Atari 800 Home Computers before they were shipped to the Sears Distribution Centres.
By the end of 1982, Atari released their Atari 1200XL game systems, which marked Atari's largest advance in their 8 bit technology. But the Atari 1200 XL, as well as the Atari 400 and Atari 800 Home Computers would be replaced the following year with Atari's all new 800XL and 600XL
Despite Atari's ability to sell throughout the world, Warner Communications decided to sell their Consumer Electronics and Home Computer divisions of Atari Inc. in 1984 and Atari was reformed under the name of the Atari Corporation.
Although Warner Communications sold the rights to the Atari game systems, they still retained the rights to the arcade division, which they later renamed to Atari Games Corporation. This is the version of Atari Games we know today, of which Warner Communications has a majority owner of the company. Atari was then amalgamated with Midway Games, which was owned by the Warner Communications company, until they sold it to a subsidiary of Hasbro.
In early 2001, Infogrames Entertainment purchased Hasbro Interactive from Hasbro, including the rights to the Atari name, which they released several popular game titles under.
Original Authors: Gobel Team (Nick)
Edit Update Authors: RPN
Updated On: 29/06/2007