BATON ROUGE, La. – A new world auction record was marked on July 16 by a factory-sealed 4GB original 2007 iPhone that achieved $190,373. Offered in the 2023 LCG Summer Premier Auction held by LCG Auctions, the final sale price represents the highest price ever paid at auction for any iPhone – 300% more than the previous record set in February when the auction house sold an 8GB version of the original iPhone for $63,356.
When the iPhone was introduced on June 29, 2007, Apple offered the innovative device with either 4GB or 8GB of memory. Since most consumers chose the 8GB model, the 4GB version was discontinued after just a few months and replaced with a 16GB option. As a result, industry experts were optimistic that this example had the potential to surpass any previous iPhone sale, as the limited availability of the 4GB model back in 2007 makes it highly unlikely that many other examples will surface.
In the past year, LCG Auctions sold a pair of 8GB versions of the 2007 factory sealed first-edition iPhone for record prices – the aforementioned $63,356 sale in February, and an October 2022 sale for a then-record price of $39,340.
“Despite the extensive worldwide media exposure our previous sales received and the hundreds of contacts we’ve had with consumers who thought they had a factory-sealed original iPhone, this is the only 4GB factory-sealed version to surface,” said LCG Auctions Founder Mark Montero. “Based upon our recent record-setting sales and the fact that the 4GB model is probably 20 times rarer than the 8GB version, we are not surprised it established a new record price, but surpassing the $190,000 mark was quite surprising.”
The phone’s provenance is pristine, as the consignor was part of the original engineering team at Apple when the iPhone first launched. Released at retail in 2007 for $499 for the 4GB version and $599 for the 8GB version, the original iPhone included a touchscreen, a 2-megapixel camera and a web browser. The iconic box features a life-size image of the iPhone with 12 icons on the screen. It quickly became Apple’s most successful product, forever changed the smartphone industry, and was named the Time Magazine Invention of the Year in 2007.