For those of us that are old enough to remember, the release of the first Apple personal computer was a seminal moment. Never before could any of us imagine having instant access to so much computing power in the comforts of our own homes. This notion may seem a little bit antiquated now in the era of iPhones and iPads, but it was a big release for those of us that at one point thought computers had to be the size of a room.
As it turns out, though, many people pine for this simple technology. According to The Associated Press, an original Apple 1 is set to soon be sold by the auction house Christie's. The bidding will start at a whopping $300,000, but it is expected to sell for closer to $500,000.
Looking at the Apple 1 now – it's essentially just a motherboard, a keyboard and some wires attached to a wooden board – it is very difficult to imagine that a device with a million times less memory than a standard computer today could be worth so much money. After all, it's doubtful that Steve Jobs and Steve Wozniak would have imagined demand being so high for an object they made in a garage in 1976. However, the AP reported that many people are willing to fork over big bucks to get their hands on the Apple 1 because it is considered a revolutionary device that forever changed the way we think about computing.
"This is the seed from which the entire orchard grew, and without this, there would be no Apple," Stephen A. Edwards, professor of computer science at Columbia University, told the news source. "I've been shocked auction prices got into the six digits. The market has just gone crazy."
This is not the first Apple 1 to be sold recently, as one that was sold in a German auction in May fetched more than $670,000. However, only an estimated 30 to 50 of the 200 made are still around today, which makes the Apple 1 perhaps the most expensive PC around.
How much will your MacBook be worth in 30 years?
This Apple 1 is not the only vintage technology being sold by Christie's, as other items up for sale include an Apple Lisa from 1983 and an early prototype of the first MacIntosh laptop.
So, does this mean that your old MacBook will be worth big money decades from now as an antique? It's far too early to tell now, of course, but chances are a collector in the future will have little desire to have a computer that lacks a screen or features a problematic keyboard. Whether to keep it in pristine condition for today or for a 22nd Century auction, turn to iResQ's MacBook repair services to maintain the structural integrity of your investment.