Vintage Apple-1 computer signed by Steve Wozniak expected to fetch $200K or more at auction

A vintage Apple-1 computer, originally conceived by the late Steve Jobs and company co-founder Steve Wozniak, is going up for auction.

The piece is signed by Wozniak, according to Boston house RR Auction and it still works.

The Steves originally thought of the Apple-1 as a bare circuit board they’d sell as a kit for electronics hobbyists to assemble. But then Jobs brought the idea to The Byte Shop in Mountain View, Calif., one of the world’s first personal computer stores. Seeking to make the magic machines accessible beyond the purview of hobbyists, owner Paul Terrell said he’d buy 50 of them if they came fully assembled, RR Auction said.

Over 10 months, from 1976-1977, Jobs and Wozniak made about 200 of the Apple-1 computers and sold 175 of them. In June 1977 they brought out the Apple II, one of the first mass-produced microcomputer products ever launched, which revolutionized the nascent industry.

Electronics hobbyists may have been the first target audience, but once the sales and manufacturing took off, the idea of personal computers caught on, and a multi-billion-dollar company and industry were born.

The rest, as they say, is history. In June, Apple became the first ever publicly traded business to obtain a $3 trillion market value at the close of trading.

The Apple-1 up for auction is restored and fully operational, and also includes a custom-built case with a built-in keyboard.

“It’s an incredibly rare commodity,” said Tim Bajarin, chairman of technology research firm Creative Strategies, told The Associated Press. “You can trace the growth of the PC industry to the Apple-1. Before this, the idea of having a personal computer was totally outrageous.”

The computer is expected to fetch about $200,000 at the auction, which runs through Aug. 24. Last year an Apple-1 prototype sold for almost $700,000.

Image: tmgrup


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