The Sphere 1 was called the "the first 'true' personal computer" by Byte Magazine1 because it included the computing hardware, a keyboard with a number pad and a built-in monitor. Things are all things we take for granted now, but in 1975 you often had to buy them separately.
This particular computer was owned by Mike Wise, the founder of Sphere Computer. In fact, the back of this computer doesn't fit correctly...his wife said it was because "He never wanted to put the back on the computer because he was always tinkering with it".
Mike Wise said that about 1,300 Spheres were sold and about half of them were in kit form and half were assembled2. One ad for the computer in the July 1975 issue of Radio-Electronics magazine shows the price for a kit as $650. By January 1976 we see ads for the Sphere 1, in kit form, for $860. The fully assembled Sphere 1 computer was $1400. These ads also mention the Sphere 2, Sphere 3 and a Sphere 4 for $7995 (fully assembled). We are not sure if any of these models were sold. We believe the company closed in 1977.
The Sphere Corporation put out a newletter entitled, "Global News" and we have a copy of one below.
Much more to come...including interviews with those who knew Mike best.
Copyright © 2017 by Early Computers Project, All Rights Reserved.