Apple 1 computer auctioned for $374,000

. June 16, 2012

An Apple 1 computer has been sold for $374,000 at Sotheby’s New York, the working computer that heralded the start of the personal computing revolution – sold for $374,500, more than doubling the high estimate of $180,000. Two bidders battled for the device, which eventually sold to an anonymous telephone bidder.

‘The Apple Computer’ was created by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak in 1976 and presented to the Homebrew Computer Club in Palo Alto the same year. It was dismissed by everyone except Paul Terrell, the owner of a chain of stores called Byte Shop who ordered 50 for $500 each which he then offered to the public for $666.66. Terrell insisted that the circuit boards come fully assembled rather than as kits, so Jobs and Wozniak built the 50 in just 30 days. When these were complete they continued working and produced a further 150 which they sold to friends and other vendors for the retail price. Despite being the most complete device of its type available at the time, the Apple I did not come with the monitor, keyboard, power supply, or case that constitutes the modern computer. Of these original Apple I computers, it is thought that fewer than 50 survive, with only six known to be in working condition.

Just before the Apple I came across the block, a 1974 report written by Steve Jobs while he was working at Atari sold for $27,500, above the $10/15,000 pre-sale estimate.

Category: News

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