Apple has just revealed its latest fiscal results for the fourth quarter, and once again the company has achieved record revenue and profits – yet it still managed to come slightly under analyst expectations.
That’s very unusual, as generally Apple sets records and blows past analyst estimates (yes, Cupertino is rather damned by its own high standards, at times).
For Q4 (ended September 29th) Apple raked in $36 billion revenue and made a net profit of $8.2 billion. Analysts were expecting the latter to be $8.3 billion, though.
The figure is still up a long way from the same quarter last year, when the company made a net profit of $6.6 billion (on revenue of $28.3 billion).
International sales contributed almost two-thirds of its revenue this time round, and Apple sold a strong 26.9 million iPhones in the quarter, growth of 58 per cent.
It was iPads where things fell down slightly, with 14 million shifted, representing 26 per cent growth year-on-year – which is still very good, of course, but not quite what was hoped for.
Macs remained pretty much level – they were up 1 per cent on 4.9 million – whereas iPods were once again down a lot, 19 per cent in fact, to 5.3 million units. The media player is something of a dying breed in this brave new world of smartphones and tablets.
Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO: “We’re very proud to end a fantastic fiscal year with record September quarter results. We’re entering this holiday season with the best iPhone, iPad, Mac and iPod products ever, and we remain very confident in our new product pipeline.”
The new product for this quarter is, of course, the iPad mini – although the pricing on that, at £100 more than the Nexus 7, is somewhat controversial. It’s still likely to sell by the bucket-load, naturally enough.
Indeed, even at the £269 base model asking price, the iPad mini will likely cut back Apple’s very high profit margins, as the company isn’t making as much on the device as it normally manages with its premium pricing.