Apple surpassed the high expectations of Wall Street analysts by reporting new record figures for the past holiday quarter. The company noted a boom in iPhone upgrades in China and strong growth in each of its segments.
Apple (AAPL), the largest US public company by market capitalisation of almost $2.4 trillion, more than justified the high sales expectations of market experts during the holiday quarter.
For Q1 of fiscal 2021, which ended last month, Apple reported a 34 per cent rise in earnings per share to $1.68.
Total revenue rose 21% to $111.4 billion.
Apple's international sales accounted for 64% of revenue for the quarter. Sales in Greater China totaled $21.31 billion, up from $13.6 billion last year, the most in Apple's sales history in the region.
iPhone sales in Q1
Sales of iPhones for the holiday quarter rose 17% to $65.6 billion, $5 billion more than analysts had expected. The figure represented 59% of Apple's total revenue.
Sales of Macs, iPads, wearable devices and Apple services
Mac sales grew 21% to $8.7 billion, while iPad tablet sales increased 41% to $8.4 billion. Remote working and home learning trends, driven by the coronavirus pandemic, drove sales in both product categories.
Revenue in the Wearable Devices, Home and Accessories division, which includes the Apple Watch, AirPods wireless headphones, smart speakers and more, rose 30% to nearly $13 billion. New Apple Watch and AirPods models drove sales growth during the quarter. Apple's services business grew 24% to $15.76 billion, with Apple services including the App Store, iCloud, Apple Pay, Apple Music, Apple TV+ and others.
This category should continue to grow going forward, as Apple notes "a record high installed base of active devices".
Apple shares, up nearly 80% over the past 12 months, declined after the quarterly results were announced, possibly due to a lack of outlook for investors.
Apple has refused to give forecasts since the Covid-19 pandemic began in early 2020, citing conditions of uncertainty, the company has not given sales or profit forecasts for the current quarter.