Apple I computer fetches $671,400 at German auction

Apple I computer fetches $671,400 at German auction

Summary: The rare Apple I is one of only 50 survivors of the original 200 made.

TOPICS: Apple, EU, PCs
Apple 1
The Apple I machine was released in 1976 (Image: Auction Team Breker)

A rare Apple I computer has sold for a record breaking €516,471 ($671,400) after it went under the hammer at a historic computer auction in Germany on Saturday.

The machine, sold by Auction Team Breker in Cologne, is one of only 200 that were built and is thought to be one of the last 50 remaining. The auctioneers claim that this particular machine is one of only six Apple I computers that still work.

The homebuilt Apple I computer was created by Steve Wozniak and Steve Jobs and was expected to sell for between $260,000 and $400,000. The lot includes all the system components, plus the original manual and a letter to the original owner signed by Jobs.

The "Middle Eastern" buyer wants to remain anonymous, according to a spokesman from Auction Team Breker. 

Last November, the Cologne-based auctioneer made international news when it sold  an original working 1976 Apple I computer for a then-record price of $640,000. Last July, Sotheby's auctioned off an original Apple I motherboard for $374,500.

Another rare Apple computer, the Apple Lisa, was sold at the Breker auction for €41,808 ($54,351). The Apple Lisa was the first mouse-controlled computer when it was built in 1983. It also exceeded the auctioneers' estimations of selling for between $20,000 and $40,000. 

Topics: Apple, EU, PCs

Sam Shead

About Sam Shead

Sam is generally at his happiest with a new piece of technology in his hands or nailing down an exclusive story. In the past he's written for The Engineer and the Daily Mail. These days, Sam is particularly interested in emerging technology, datacentres, cloud, storage and web start-ups.

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  • Mouse-controlled computers

    Not to be pedantic, but the Apple Lisa was not the first computer with a mouse. That would be the Xerox Star. Maybe if you qualified it with the first mass-produced computer that sold in any significant measurable quantitiy, then it would be the Lisa.
    • It still wouldn't be apple

      "Maybe if you qualified it with the first mass-produced computer that sold in any significant measurable quantitiy, then it would be the Lisa."

      Nope, that would be the Windows PC. apple didn't sell very many lisa computers, certainly not enough to call them mass sales.
  • This confirms it

    apple computers are overpriced.
  • "...after it went under the hammer"

    Where Apple products belong, Under the hammer. Sledge hammer.