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Apple-1 to be auctioned off on May 25, 2013

May 6, 2013

Currently, there are estimated to only be six working models of the original Apple 1 left, and one of them is going up for auction in Germany on May 25th. Computerworld reports that it was originally purchased by one Fred Hatfield, who also received a letter signed by Steve Jobs offering an upgrade from the $666.66 Apple-1 to an Apple II 4K motherboard for another $400. According to Mike Willegal, who has tracked down many Apple 1 computers, this particular one had an interface for a selectric printer grafted onto it. Willegal also says that the reason for Jobs' letter was that the original owner "complained to Apple about limited software availability."


The auction price for the computer is expected to land somewhere between $250,000 and $400,000 when it's sold off — though strangely it apparently didn't sell last year when it was put up for auction by the same company. We've seen a few Apple 1 computers sold at auction recently, with one sold in June of 2012 fetching $374,500 and another this past December for $640,000.

Although this latest Apple 1 isn't likely to hit those heights, it still has plenty going for it — it's signed by Steve Wozniak, who built the motherboard by hand. Most importantly, it's in complete working order, as the video posted by the auctioneer proves. The video shows the usual command line on the screen, as you'd expect, but also displays an ASCII-art image of Woz and Jobs printed across the screen.

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