It's earnings season, and Apple
is once again at the forefront. The company has become something of a spectacle in recent years, seemingly unable to not turn a ridiculous profit every chance it gets. Lately, it has felt like one record quarter after another, and while Q3 2012 wasn't quite as amazing as its last holiday quarter, there are still quite a few dollars flowing into Apple's coffers. The summer quarter is always an interesting one, and this year is even more so. Not only are people perhaps waiting a bit before buying their back-to-school Mac, they're also waiting for the next-generation iPhone -- and maybe even the 7" iPad that has been bandied about. In other words, a lot of potential Apple customers are holding tight for the time being.
Still, the Q3 financials show a quarterly revenue of $35 billion, and a quarterly net profit of $8.8 billion. These results compare to revenue of $28.6 billion and net profit of $7.3 billion, or $7.79 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 42.8 percent compared to 41.7 percent in the year-ago quarter, and international sales made up for a staggering 62% of the quarter's revenue.
Apple sold 26 million iPhones this quarter, representing 28 percent unit growth over the year-ago quarter. On the iPad side, it sold 17 million, while 4 million Mac computers were moved. On the iPod side, it sold 6.8 million, which is actually a 10% drop (but not surprising, given that iPod sales have been sliding for many quarters now with people using iPhones and iPads instead).
Furthermore, Apple's Board of Directors has declared another cash dividend of $2.65 per share of the company's common stock, which ought to keep shareholders even happier. Wondering what CEO Tim Cook thought of the quarter? Here's his quote:
"We're thrilled with record sales of 17 million iPads in the June quarter. We've also just updated the entire MacBook line, will release Mountain Lion tomorrow and will be launching iOS 6 this Fall. We are also really looking forward to the amazing new products we've got in the pipeline."
So, there's some news here; first, Mountain Lion will be launching tomorrow. Second, it's kind of obvious from reading between the lines that there's a new iPhone coming. But then again, you knew that -- right? It's also important to point out that Apple's stock fell a bit following the earnings. Why? They didn't meet Wall Street's stratospheric expectations. But they exceeded Apple's own. The lesson here is that Wall St. often lives in a magical place where reality is nowhere to be found. The stock slipped, yes, but Apple made over $8 billion in profit in the last three months. Think about that. That figure is truly insane. Many pundits have jumped on Apple for "missing" expectations, but one has to wonder who is putting Wall St. in charge making realistic expectations. We're guessing all of those pundits will be at a loss for words once the holiday season comes around, particularly if there is both a next-gen iPhone and a 7" iPad on store shelves.