Apple has recorded the biggest quarterly profits ever made by a public company, as sales of its new plus-sized spiked over Christmas.
Apple said on Tuesday that it sold 74.5 million iPhones during the three months that ended on 31 December, beating all predications about the new device, which was introduced in September.
The Associated Press said that the surge in sale of the phones drove the company’s total revenue to $74.6bn, up 30 per cent from a year earlier. Net profit rose 38 per cent to $18bn, as Apple reported earnings of $3.06 a share. Analysts were expecting earnings of $2.60 a share on revenue of $67.39bn.
The new models also helped Apple increase its share of the Chinese market. Apple does not break down iPhone sales by country, but a report issued on Tuesday by research firm Canalys estimated that Apple sold more smartphones in China during the last quarter than any other maker, including South Korea’s Samsung and the Chinese companies Huawei and Xiaomi.
Given that the retail price of the iPhone is much greater than that of phones made by Chinese vendors, Canalys called this “"an amazing result".
The 10 best tablets
The 10 best tablets
1/10 Hudl 2
The best in the budget range, the Hudl comes in at only £129. But it’s not all cheap here, the tablet has an 8.3” screen, eight different choices of colours and a full HD screen. Ideal for catching up on TV and films, as well as doing all your everyday online admin. £129, tesco.com
2/10 iPad Mini 3
For those with small hands, or anyone who doesn’t like wielding a full-sized tablet, the Mini could be for you. The 7.9’’ ‘Retina’ screen is a major upgrade for the little Mini, so your kids can watch Dora the Explorer in a whole new way. Comes with Touch ID, too. £319, store.apple.com
3/10 iPad Air 2
Apple’s latest tablet might not be a huge upgrade compared to what we’re used to, but it’s still the fastest they’ve produced with their A8X chip. And it’s the thinnest, too, at a mere 6.1mm. They’ve also added Touch ID - their fingerprint recognition hardware - for added security. £399, store.apple.com
4/10 Sony Xperia Z3 Compact Tablet
Eight inches wide, 270g and waterproof to up to 1.5m? Yes, this is a particularly brilliant piece of kit. The new device from Sony is also the only tablet that can remote-play PS4 games over Wi-Fi. Plus, the battery can last for more than 12 hours. £329, sony.co.uk
5/10 Panasonic FZ-M1
This is the world’s first fanless, 7”, Windows 8.1 Pro fully-rugged tablet. It’s drop-, water- and dust-resistant and can operate in temperatures ranging from -10 to +50°C. It weighs 540g, and is 18mm thin. It also comes with a business-class price tag, however, so definitely only one for the mobile adventurer. £1946, uk.insight.com
6/10 Nexus 9
Google’s latest is brand new and available now. It has an 8.9” screen, the new Lollipop operating system – Google’s fastest yet ¬– as well as two front-facing speakers for great sound. The whopping battery means you can continuously play video for 9.5 hours. £319, play.google.com
7/10 Cintiq Companion
At £1500, this definitely isn’t a tablet for everyone but if you are feeling flush, it features a full Windows 8 system as well as a HD 13.3” screen, customizable controls that makes it ideal for professional illustrators. £1499.99 uk.shop.wacom.eu
8/10 Archos Helium 4G
At 430g the Helium, ironically, isn’t the lightest of the bunch. But it comes with 4G connectivity (though you will have to buy your own SIM) for under £200. This isn’t for everyone, but if you just want a barebones tablet for a family member then you won’t do badly with this. £199, archos.com/gb/
9/10 Samsung S Tab 10.5
Samsung’s latest borrows its design from the S5 phone, with a perforated back and a fingerprint sensor. The key boon here is performance, with 3GB of built-in RAM, a massive battery and only 6.6mm thin. Apple, watch out. £399, samsung.com
10/10 Amazon Fire HDX 7
Amazon’s tablet is still one of the best to watch TV on, especially if you have an Amazon Prime membership, which gets you access to hundreds of thousands of films and TV shows for free. £199, amazon.co.uk
Apple Chief Financial Officer Luca Maestri told the AP that revenue for the current period will increase between 14 and 20 percent from a year ago, despite the strong dollar, which has forced other companies to lower their forecasts. "We feel very good about the March quarter," he said.
Apple has set records with each new version of its iPhones. By comparison, the company sold 51mn smartphones during the holiday quarter in 2013, when its iPhone 5s and 5c models were new on the scene.
Bigger screens are one reason for the popularity of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus. Apple had resisted when other companies such as Samsung began introducing smartphones with bigger screens.
Yet some experts worry that Apple's strength could become a weakness. Apple makes more money from iPhones than any other product, including its iPods, iPads and Mac computers. That could leave it vulnerable as the overall smartphone market shows signs of slowing growth, warned BGC Partners analyst Colin Gills, who noted in a recent report that Apple depends on iPhones for nearly two-thirds of its revenue.Reuse content