Days out from the launch of a brand new tablet PC, Apple has stunned the market with a 50 per cent increase in quarterly profits to US$3.38 billion dollars, which is its best financial result in 34 years.
Despite the impact of the global recession Apple grew its revenues by 32 per cent to $15.68 billion dollars. The company said that strong demand for the iPhone and its computers had pushed sales for the last three months, which included Christmas, to new heights.
During the period, Apple sold 8.7 million iPhones. This a doubling in sales from the same time last year, with figures boosted by the company’s decision to open up iPhone sales in several markets around the world including China and the UK.
The company also sold a 3.36 million computers, with the bulk of this being laptops. On the downside, sales of iPods fell 8 per cent year-on-year.
Steve Jobs, the company’s co-founder and chief executive, said: “The new products we are planning to release this year are very strong, starting this week with a major new product that we’re really excited about.”
That could be an understatement. Industry observers are waiting with bated breath in advance of the launch on Thursday Australian time in what is expected to be a touchscreen computer that fills a gap between the iPhone and a laptop.
SmartHouse has been told that a number of Australia publishers and content providers have cut deals to deliver content for the new tablet PC.
Apple shares, which had closed up 2.69 per cent to $203.08, continued to rise in after hours trading.