Apple posts ‘blowout’ $145 billion quarter due to iPhone 12 sales
Analysts have talked for at least a year about the potential for Apple’s first 5G iPhone to drive a “supercycle” of device sales.
On Wednesday, Apple’s earnings report for the three months ended December 26 — the first since the iPhone 12 went on sale — offered an initial look at how actual sales are stacking up against that projection.
Strong iPhone sales pushed the company’s total quarterly revenue to a record US$111.4 billion ($145.89 billion) — well above the US$103.3 billion ($135.28 billion) Wall Street analysts had predicted.
Apple posted earnings of US$16.8 per diluted share, up 35 per cent from the same period in the prior year.
iPhone sales were also even better than expected: Growing more than 17 per cent year-over-year to nearly US$65.6 billion ($85.91 billion), compared with the US$59.8 billion ($78.31 billion) analysts had expected.
Apple executives last quarter had said they expected single-digit percentage growth in iPhone sales during the December quarter.
The total active installed base of iPhones worldwide is now over 1 billion, “driven by strong demand for the iPhone 12,” CEO Tim Cook said on a call with analysts Wednesday.
Despite the strong results, Apple’s stock fell more than 2 per cent in after-hours trading Wednesday.
“In our view, the iPhone 12 has been Apple’s most successful product launch in the last five years,” Morgan Stanley analysts wrote in a note to investors last week, ahead of the report.
The company also announced a cash dividend of US$0.205 per share, payable on February 11 to shareholders of record as of close of business on February 8.
The report comes as Apple’s stock has largely continued to soar in recent weeks. Its market cap this week reached an all-time record above US$2.4 trillion ($3.14 trillion).
“Our December quarter business performance was fuelled by double-digit growth in each product category, which drove all-time revenue records in each of our geographic segments and an all-time high for our installed base of active devices,” Apple CFO Luca Maestri said in a statement.