Apple enjoyed strong revenue in the second quarter of the year, typically its weakest period, with a a comeback in iPad and Mac sales and steady iPhones sales ahead of the release of a new model.
The company’s revenue jumped 7.2% from a year earlier, its best growth in seven quarters, as shipments of Apple’s flagship product rose 1.6 per cent to 41.03 million iPhones.
The biggest surprise was a revival of the iPad business, and the continued momentum of the Mac, both of which had waned in recent years as consumers shifted more money into smartphones.
Mac sales rose 6.7 per cent, the third consecutive quarter of gains, while iPads avoided a fourth consecutive quarterly slide with 1.9 per cent growth. For the first time in 14 quarters iPad shipments increased, rising 15 per cent to 11.42 million units amid strong sales to schools and businesses.
Profit for the period rose 12 per cent to $US8.72 billion ($10.9bn) — the company’s second consecutive quarterly increase in earnings after a year-long downturn.
“With revenue up 7 percent year-over-year, we’re happy to report our third consecutive quarter of accelerating growth and an all-time quarterly record for Services revenue,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We hosted an incredibly successful Worldwide Developers Conference in June, and we’re very excited about the advances in iOS, macOS, watchOS and tvOS coming this fall.”
“We reported unit and revenue growth in all our product categories in the June quarter, driving 17 percent growth in earnings per share,” said Luca Maestri, Apple’s CFO. “We also returned $11.7 billion to investors during the quarter, bringing cumulative capital returns under our program to almost $223 billion.”
The results came during what is historically Apple’s softest quarter — a time when consumers often hold off buying iPhones in anticipation of an autumn release of a new device.
Apple is providing the following guidance for its fiscal 2017 fourth quarter:
- revenue between $49 billion and $52 billion
- gross margin between 37.5 percent and 38 percent
- operating expenses between $6.7 billion and $6.8 billion
- other income/(expense) of $500 million
- tax rate of 25.5 percent