A first-generation iPhone just sold for a record $63,356 at auction
Over 100 times its original priceBy Rob Thubron
What just happened? In the unlikely event that you own a sealed, first-generation iPhone, you might want to take it to an auction house. One of Apple's handsets matching that description sold over the weekend for a record price for an iPhone: $63,356, more than 100 times its original price.
Steve Jobs famously introduced the iPhone to the world on January 9, 2007, at MacWorld San Francisco before it launched on June 29 for $499 for the 4GB storage version or $599 for the handset with 8GB. That first model also features a 2-megapixel camera and a 3.5-inch screen.
LCG Auctions, the auction house that handled the sale, notes that factory-sealed first-generation iPhones are highly desirable items among collectors; the last one sold for almost $40,000 last October.
The latest iPhone auction had a starting bid of $2,500 and attracted 27 offers. The winning bid was $63,356.40, over $20,000 more than the similar first-gen device auctioned off late last year.
Insider reports that the iPhone in question has an interesting backstory. Seller Karen Green's friends bought it for her when she got a management job at PetSmart in 2007, but Green already had three phone lines with Verizon, and iPhones at the time could only use AT&T. She considered selling it several times over the years, and decided to have it appraised after hearing of one that sold on eBay for $10,000.
Green took the phone onto daytime TV show "Doctor & the Diva" in 2019, where it was valued at $5,000. She held onto the device for a few more years until hearing about the iPhone that sold for almost $40,000. This happened just as Green was opening a cosmetic tattoo studio called Tattician in New Jersey.
"If I could hold off on the phone for like another 10 years, I probably would," she said. "The only reason why I am selling that phone is because I need to support this business."
Original Apple equipment often attracts large sums from collectors and fans. One of the more recent was the Apple-1 computer signed by Steve Wozniak, which sold for roughly $340,000. But that's around half the record amount someone paid for an Apple-1; a model sold for $950,000 in 2014.