Incredible $1.5 million 'Apple Computer Revolution' auction includes a sealed iPhone, Apple-1 Computer, and more

Apple-1
(Image credit: RR Auction)

There have been tons of high-profile Apple auctions over the last few years including some huge figures changing hands for mint, sealed original iPhones.We've also seen things as basic as business cards bring in a lot more money than you might expect, but nothing comes close to a new collection of Apple-related lots that have now sold as part of a so-called Apple Computer Revolution auction.

The auction, run by the folks at RR Auction, as is so often the case with Apple-related actions, includes a ton of lots that sold for a variety of different fees ranging from almost $323,000 to just $125. At the very top of the pile was an Apple-1 computer signed by Steve Wozniak, shortly followed by a business card signed by Steve Jobs that sold for more than $181,000. That item was expected to sell for around $10,00 which was clearly somewhat short of where things eventually ended.

The full auction covered a total of 120 different items across a range of categories including those related to NeXt and Apple as well as iPhones, iPads, and a range of Apple computer hardware. There were also eight different lots that fell under the Steve Jobs category including that business card.

Huge sums of money

Going back to the Apple-1, this item is quite a little bit of Apple history, as RR Auction's lot description explains.

"Highly sought-after fully functional 'Byte Shop'–style Apple-1 computer (also commonly known as the Apple I, or Apple Computer 1), complete with all components and accessories required for operation," the description explains. "This computer was originally used as a demonstration system at the Data Domain computer store in Columbus, Indiana, in 1977, before being given to the original owner in 1978."

That incredible Steve Jobs business card originated around 1983 and was signed by Jobs in his typical lower-case style. "The off-white card, 3.5 x 2, features the iconic 'rainbow' version of the Apple 'byte' logo and reads: 'Steven Jobs, Chairman Board of Directors,' with the company's address and contact information listed below: '10260 Bandley Drive, Cupertino, California 95014, (408) 996-1010.' The business card is listed as being "in fine condition, with a faint stain on the front from an old tape stain on the back."

Less costly items included an Apple Computer vintage employee shirt as well as an iconic Apple Computer sweatshirt. There was even an Apple Macintosh II Desktop brochure which ultimately sold for $125.

Describing the auction before it closed, RR Auction said that the "March 2024 sale chronicles Steve Jobs and the Apple revolution, with additional featured items from the realms of vintage computing and video games. Highlighted by Steve Jobs autographs and memorabilia—including ultra-rare Apple Computer checks, significant signed letters, and business cards—the auction also plays host to a wide variety of original Apple hardware, including a functional Apple-1 Computer, colorful iMacs, scores of new-in-box iPods, and sealed iPhones." There were also rare Atari prototypes and schematics included including items developed by the famous Douglas Engelbart.

With the kinds of sums some of these things are being sold for, now might be a very good time to start checking those cupboards and garages in case you happen to have a $100,000 windfall waiting to be found. You might be surprised what could be worth a small fortune.

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Oliver Haslam
Contributor

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.