A fully operational Apple-1 computer is set to auction in Germany in May.
Apple’s beginnings in the 1970s were humble. The company was far from the globe-straddling juggernaut it is today.
The Apple-1 was a major leap forward in home computing
It started in a garage in Palo Alto, California. Founders Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs sold the few valuable possessions they had to get the company off the ground.
The Apple-1 was its first release and was sold in kit form.
Buyers bought the motherboard and assembled their own housing.
Only around 200 Apple-1s were built, of which 175 were sold. However, Apple recalled these early models – offering buyers the opportunity to upgrade to an Apple II (which featured moulded housing) for free.
Most of these early adopters were delighted to upgrade. Only 70 or so Apple-1s are known to have survived to the present day, of which around eight are in working condition.
In 2014, the Henry Ford Museum in Dearborn, Michigan paid $905,000 for an Apple-1 in recognition of its extraordinary impact on the world of technology.
This example is offered by Auction Team Breker and comes with its original manual as well as records of phone conversations with both Jobs and Wozniak.
There’s no estimate available ahead of the May 20 auction, but it will almost certainly clear $600,000.
Another one in similar condition (and displaying a signature from Wozniak) achieved $671,400 in 2013.
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