An Apple 1 computer sold at auction for £133,250 (US$213,600) at auction Tuesday afternoon in London. Auctioned by Christie’s, the Apple 1 was purchased by Italian businessman Marco Boglione who literally phoned his bid in, according to The Associated Press. On hand for the auction was the genius who designed it back in 1976, Apple cofounder Steve Wozniak.
The Woz was there to watch the proceedings, and he also promised to add an autographed letter to the lot that included the Apple 1. The AP reported that he felt the auction was “an historic moment for his work,” noting the three-rotor Enigma computer that also sold at the auction. The Wall Street Journal reported that the Enigma went for £67,250 ($106,144).
Apple 1 Lot from Christie’s
“Today my heart went out as I got to see things auctioned off like the Turing documents and the Enigma machine — and the Apple I,” Mr. Wozniak told reporters on hand for the event. “It really was an important step, (even though) I didn’t feel that way when I designed it. I’m very delighted for the gentleman who purchased it.”
The Apple 1 sold toward’s the high end of the £100,000-£150,000 the auction house expected it to fetch, a hefty premium over the $666.66 it sold for in 1976.
The winning bidder, Marco Boglione is, among other things, the founder and president of BasicNet SpA, a multinational based in Italy that runs a conglomeration of clothing based companies. Mr. Boglione got his start in the sports-branded clothing business, but the AP reported that his brother, who was present for the auction, said he bought the Apple 1 because he has always had a deep love for computers.