This iPhone just sold for a record-breaking $63,000 at auction

Hands holidng the original iPhone in 2007
(Image credit: Apple)

A first-generation iPhone has sold for a record-breaking $63,356 at auction, the highest sale ever for an original iPhone. 

The iPhone, still factory sealed, sold for a whopping $52,797 at LCG Auctions on Sunday evening with an additional 20% buyer’s premium fee bringing the total sale to over $60,000. 

The 8GB smartphone, owned by Karen Green, a cosmetic tattoo artist, was a gift given as congratulations for starting a new job in 2007. The iPhone, boasting a 3.5-inch display and a 2-megapixel camera was the first of its kind retailing for $599 -- a long way from the best iPhone of today with its 6.7-inch display and a 48-megapixel camera.

Making it rain

Originally released as an AT&T exclusive, the iPhone did not work with any other carriers at launch. Green, not wanting to lose her phone lines at Verizon, decided to keep the first-generation iPhone sealed. Fast forward 16 years and her decision to stick with Verizon has reaped some incredible rewards.

The price of original iPhones has soared in recent years with prices going as high as $39,000 last year for a sealed first-generation iPhone.

When Green heard about the rise in prices of sealed original iPhones she couldn’t help but check the old device sitting on her shelf. "I thought to myself, 'Oh my God, I think I have the original,'" she told Business Insider.

The eye-watering sum of money for the boxed original iPhone is unsurprising looking back at the meteoric rise of Apple over the last two decades. If you purchased $1000 of AAPL shares back on January 9, 2007, the date of the iPhone reveal, those same shares would be worth $53,000 today. 

Whether you bought a sealed smartphone thinking it would be the future or thought that Apple would go on to shape modern history by investing in the company, let’s just say you’d be sitting on a pretty penny today.

John-Anthony Disotto
How To Editor

John-Anthony Disotto is the How To Editor of iMore, ensuring you can get the most from your Apple products and helping fix things when your technology isn’t behaving itself.

Living in Scotland, where he worked for Apple as a technician focused on iOS and iPhone repairs at the Genius Bar, John-Anthony has used the Apple ecosystem for over a decade and prides himself in his ability to complete his Apple Watch activity rings.

John-Anthony has previously worked in editorial for collectable TCG websites and graduated from The University of Strathclyde where he won the Scottish Student Journalism Award for Website of the Year as Editor-in-Chief of his university paper. He is also an avid film geek, having previously written film reviews and received the Edinburgh International Film Festival Student Critics award in 2019. 

John-Anthony also loves to tinker with other non-Apple technology and enjoys playing around with game emulation and Linux on his Steam Deck.

In his spare time, John-Anthony can be found watching any sport under the sun from football to darts, taking the term “Lego house” far too literally as he runs out of space to display any more plastic bricks, or chilling on the couch with his French Bulldog, Kermit.