February 3, 1986
First use of “Vaporware”
The term “vaporware” is first used by Philip Elmer-DeWitt in a TIME magazine article.
In the computer industry, vaporware or vapourware is a product, typically computer hardware or software, that is announced to the general public but is never actually manufactured nor officially cancelled. Use of the word has broadened to include products such as automobiles.
Vaporware is often announced months or years before its purported release, with development details lacking. Developers have been accused of intentionally promoting vaporware to keep customers from switching to competing products that offer more features.Network World magazine called vaporware an “epidemic” in 1989, and blamed the press for not investigating whether developers’ claims were true. Seven major companies issued a report in 1990 saying they felt vaporware had hurt the industry’s credibility.