There’s Apple memorabilia and then there’s THIS. While Apple routinely sells millions of computers each and every quarter, the personal computing landscape was a lot different back in 1976. That it so say non-existant. Apple changed all that when they introduced the Apple II and brought computing to the masses, but the Apple I is a relic in it’s own right.
Originally designed and put together by Steve Wozniak in the garage of Steve Jobs’ parents, the Apple I came with 8k of RAM and made its first public appearance at the Homebrew Computer Club in 1976. Apple would go on to sell about 200 units of the Apple I, and one of those will be up for auction on November 23 at Christie’s of London, a high-end auction house.
Impressively, the bundle comes with everything that one could expect to find with the Apple I back in 1976. Included is an original Apple I manual (complete with the original Apple logo featuring Isaac Newton), a letter from Steve Jobs explaining how to connect a keyboard and monitor to the machine, a BASIC cassette tape, along with the original packaging.
And what’s the starting asking price on this piece of computing history? A whopping 150,000 pounds, or approximately $241,000 – though Christie’s estimates that the final bid will be anywhere from $161,000 to $241,000
And how cool is this, the return address on the original shipping box is of Jobs’ parents home.
As a point of interest, the original cost of the Apple I was $666.66, but don’t worry, it’s not cursed. Steve Wozniak reportedly settled on the price because he liked repeating digits. Oh Woz. Who knew back then that purchasing an Apple I could have been such a lucrative investment? Something tells me, though, that the original Bondi Blue iMac I have secluded away in my basement won’t ever be worth much of anything.
Curiously, the photos above are of the exact same Apple I that was up for sale on Ebay for $50,000 in late 2009. We’re guessing that it was never sold and somehow ended up at Christie’s. Or maybe it was successfully sold via Ebay and still wound up at Christie’s. Either way, that’s a lot of dough for a dinky old computer!
Here’s the typed up note from Jobs explaining how to use the device.
And just for kicks, here’s a close-up look on the original Apple I manual.