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Way back in the Dark Ages of 2007, when the smartphone was not yet as important to our lives as oxygen, Apple introduced the first iPhone, forever changing life as we knew it.

Hyperbole? Not when you consider an unopened, first-generation iPhone sold for nearly $40,000 Sunday at LCG Auctions. When it first debuted in June of 2007, the iPhone cost $599.

Original iPhone

An original first-generation iPhone sealed in box just sold for nearly $40,000.

“We expected the bidding for this item to be fervent and it did not disappoint,” said Mark Montero, Founder of LCG Auctions.

Tech collecting has jolted the hobby lately. In August, a rare Apple-1 computer prototype sold for $677,196, or about 1,000 times more than the hardware’s original cost, while last year a sealed Super Mario Bros video game from 1996 sold for $1.56 million.

The original iPhone included 8 GB of storage, a touchscreen, a 2-magapixel camera and a web browser. The box features a full-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.

Steve Jobs

Steve Jobs, co-founder of Apple, introduces the iPhone in 2007.

When the late Apple co-founder and CEO Steve Jobs first introduced the iPhone 15 years ago, he called it a combination of "an iPod, a phone, and an internet communicator" all in one.

“Collectors and investors would be hard pressed to find a superior example,” the item description read. “Relevance and rarity comprise a winning formula for this red hot collectible.”

The tech relic was listed on LCG Auctions on September 30, and the auction concluded Sunday. The iPhone was estimated to fetch $30,000 or more at auction. With fees, the final hammer price was $39,339.60. 

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