Apple posts record revenue despite slowing iPhone sales

Company fingers crucial Chinese consumer market for sluggish growth

Apple posts record revenue despite slowing iPhone sales

Technology giant Apple announced Tuesday that its first quarter revenue increased to record levels, despite slowing sales of its flagship iPhone devices.

The California-based company said in a statement that revenue for the quarter, which ended Dec. 26, 2015, was $75.9 billion, while net income was $18.4 billion.

Compared to the same period in 2015, Apple posted figures of $74.6 billion and $18 billion, respectfully.

“Our team delivered Apple’s biggest quarter ever, thanks to the world’s most innovative products and all-time record sales of iPhone, Apple Watch and Apple TV,” Apple chief executive Tim Cook said in a statement. “The growth of our services business accelerated during the quarter to produce record results, and our installed base recently crossed a major milestone of one billion active devices.”

The quarter, which covered the last three months of 2015, was boosted by strong Christmas holiday sales.

The company announced that it sold 74.8 million iPhones worldwide during the period, a 0.4 percent rise from shipments a year ago but the slowest growth rate since the first iPhone was released in 2007.

In addition, iPad tablet sales declined 21 percent to 16.1 million compared to the previous year, while Mac laptop sales decreased 3 percent to 5.3 million.

Apple pointed to flailing in the Chinese consumer market, now a crucial region for iPhone sales, as a culprit behind the sluggish growth.

The numbers also suggest that excitement for the latest iPhones, the iPhone 6S and 6S Plus, doesn’t match the enthusiasm of previous models.

Investors believe years of extraordinary growth under co-founder Steve Jobs and then Cook that made Apple the most valuable publically-traded technology company in the world could be waning.

According to analysts, the record revenue is a result of growth in the company's services, against the slowdown in sales of its devices. Apple services, such as the App Store, iCloud and Apple Pay, increased to $6.05 billion in the quarter, marking a massive 26 percent increase year over year.

The company also announced that it believes revenues will drop next quarter compared to the same period in 2015, which would be the first time Apple’s quarterly revenues have dipped in 13 years.

Apple said it forecasts revenue for that period to be between $50 billion and $53 billion, which is down from $58 billion the same period a year ago.

The company’s stock has steadily dropped since the beginning of 2016 and fell more than 2 percent to under $98 per share in after-hours trading following the earnings report. 

Anadolu Agency

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