Here's why this original iPhone could break all previous auction records

iPhone 1 sealed in a box
This original 2007 iPhone is up for auction (Image credit: LCG Auctions)

While we're looking forward to the launch of the iPhone 15 later this year, some people are cashing in on their original iPhones – and the latest unsealed iPhone 1 from 2007 to go on sale could well break previous sales records when it goes up for auction.

The reason that this auction (via 9to5Mac) is so special is that it's a 4GB model. When the iPhone first went on sale on June 29, 2007, it was available with 4GB or 8GB of RAM installed, and the majority of customers went with the more expensive 8GB option.

Trade in the 4GB variant was so sluggish that Apple, then led by Steve Jobs, pulled it from sale on September 5 – not much more than a couple of months after it was first released. That means this particular original iPhone is something of a collector's item.

It's also completely sealed and has never been opened, further adding to its value. In the words of LCG Auctions: "Collectors and investors would be hard pressed to find a superior example. Relevance and rarity comprise a winning formula for this red-hot collectible."

In it for the money

Having first gone on sale for $499 (the 8GB version was $599), the estimate is that this smartphone could be auctioned off for 200 times that amount: the auction house has put the high-end estimate at $100,000 (roughly £78,700 or AU$150,085).

The previous auctions of original iPhones have been for the 8GB model. Back in February 2023, one such handset fetched $63,356.40 after 27 bids. Subsequent auctions haven't reached those heights – perhaps because more of these devices are now going on sale.

Indeed, the 4GB model we're talking about here is one of four that are currently being showcased by LCG Auctions. The less rare these unopened original iPhones are, the lower the prices they're going to be able to command from collectors.

Still, the 4GB spec means this particular lot should attract plenty of interest. If you'd like to get involved, the auction ends 15 days from the date of this article – and as we're writing this, the current highest bid is standing at $11,000.

David Nield
Freelance Contributor

Dave is a freelance tech journalist who has been writing about gadgets, apps and the web for more than two decades. Based out of Stockport, England, on TechRadar you'll find him covering news, features and reviews, particularly for phones, tablets and wearables. Working to ensure our breaking news coverage is the best in the business over weekends, David also has bylines at Gizmodo, T3, PopSci and a few other places besides, as well as being many years editing the likes of PC Explorer and The Hardware Handbook.