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Rare Apple-I fetches less than expected at German auction

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Apple-I . PHOTO: CNN

A rare working Apple-1, the first computer produced by Steve Jobs’ world-beater-to-be company four decades ago, sold for less than expected at auction in Germany on Saturday.

One of only eight working models in the world, the machine fetched 110,000 euros ($125,000), well below the expected 180,000-300,000 euros — suggesting that a spike in prices after Jobs’ 2011 death is definitely over.

“From our point of view we are back at normal levels. Five years after the death of (Apple co-founder) Steve Jobs the ‘hype’ has settled back,” Uwe Breker, who oversaw the auction in Cologne, told AFP.

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Breker’s auction house, which specialises in the sale of technical antiques, had also been involved in a 2013 sale of another Apple-I — which fetched 516,000 euros.

The model auctioned off Saturday and whose original owner was a Californian engineer, still had its receipt, its operating manual and other documents.

“(The Apple 1) was one of the first opportunities for someone to possess a real computer. I’d been working with computers for a while but they were huge,” original owner John J. Dryden, who bought the Apple in 1976, said Friday.

He admitted that parting with the machine was a wrench but said the time had come as he had not used it in a long time.

The computer was one of around 200 Apple 1 units marketed by Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak, who developed and built it.

Saturday’s buyer was a German engineer who collects old computers.


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