This week Apple did the usual Apple thing and took the world by surprise. No, they haven't launched something new and sexy — although there are plenty or rumours around about that which I’ll touch on later — but it was their financial report.
They posted a near-as-damn-it 40% margin and had earnings of around $46 billion in the last quarter. The surprise? These number are well ahead of almost all expectations, the most optimistic of which came in at, a now apparently disappointing, $44 billion. Not a bad few weeks, eh?
So where does that kind of revenue come from? Sales of the iPhone continue to grow — they sold 44 million devices, which was well ahead of expectations and, add to that, over 16 million iPads which, to give the story some balance and reality, is slightly below their expectations. Oh, and don't forget, that revenue figure had a bit of support too from the sales of 4 million Macs and 3 million iPods. Actually, a quick question here – how much longer do we think Apple will be making iPods?
Apple's CEO, Tim Cook, was rightly very proud of the company's quarterly results, citing the iPhone sales figures and Apple’s record revenue from services as being particularly pleasing. No sooner had he finished grinning from ear to ear about the numbers, there was the usual type of Apple ‘surprise’ when he announced some upcoming new products and services that "only Apple could bring to market”. What does this mean? What are these new products? He wouldn't be drawn on any detail but there is a vague suggestion that Apple is not on the verge of creating just a new product but, maybe, an entirely new product category.
I'm sure there will be plenty of rumours flying around concerning this but, as always, all in good time, we'll find out what surprise Mr Cook and his gang have and have up their sleeves for the world in the next few months.
Let's face it, in terms of marketing, Apple has achieved so much that so many others would love to have. The image, the brand, the customer love. We spend time talking with our customers explaining that revenue in the mobile space comes mainly from the Apple device sector and with sales and revenues as strong as this in the last quarter, there seems to be something attractive for money very close to the Apple brand.