Apple financial results Q1 2015: Q1 2015 financial results

Apple has announced its financial results for the first quarter of 2015. Here, we bring you all of the top analysts' predictions, so you can compare them with Apple's actual figures. Also, see how the results compare with previous quarters and what the results mean to consumers. Plus find out how many iPhonesiPadsMacs and other products Apple sold over the festive period.

Apple's earnings report took place on Tuesday evening at 10pm (it'll be 2pm in Cupertino at Apple's headquarters), and will be communicated to analysts and press via a conference call and press release. The results are for the quarter that began on 28 September and ended on 31 December. Apple's financial year runs from September to September. 

You'll be able to listen to the audio from the call live on Apple's website.

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Apple financial results Q1 2015: How much money did Apple make?

In the first fiscal quarter (up until the end of December) Apple posted record quarterly revenue of $74.6 billion and record quarterly net profit of $18 billion, or $3.06 per diluted share.

This compares to the just gone fourth quarter (Q4 2014), when Apple made $42.1 billion in revenue. Its quarterly net profit was $8.5 billion, or $1.42 per diluted share.

Of course, the holiday quarter tends to be a huge one for Apple, with customers buying Apple's products as gifts, whether that's hardware or content from iTunes, which also makes up a large part of Apple's revenue.

In the same quarter last year Apple saw revenue of $57.6 billion and net profit of $13.1 billion, or $2.07 per diluted share. This holiday quarter was up 30 percent compared to a year ago.

Apple's own expectations set out after its Q4 results back in October, suggested that the figure might be $63.5 to 66.5 billion. That would have represent a 15% growth over the same quarter last year. Apple beat that figure, with $74.6 billion in revenue.

Analysts were  predicting growth of 21% year-over year, at around $68.3 billion, according to Fortune, so they should be happy with the results.

Gross margin for the quarter was 39.9 per cent compared to 37.9 per cent in the year-ago quarter. The margine improvement suggests that Apple's move to increase sales of the 64GB iPhone by decreasing the appeal of the entry-level 16GB version may have paid off (selling more of the higher priced phone will result in bigger margins for the company).

International sales accounted for 65 per cent of the quarter’s revenue.

(We are currently updating this article)

Apple financial results Q1 2015: How many iPhones did Apple sell?

Apple has announced that iPhone unit sales hit an impressive 74.5 million in the quarter - a new record.

According to Apple's data the company sold 74.468 million iPhones and made $51.182 billion in revenue from those sales. In the same quarter a year ago, Apple sold 51.025 million iPhones for $32.498 billion revenue.

The result is also a significant increase over the iPhone sales from Apple's previous quarter, which is when the iPhone 6 and iPhone 6 Plus first became available to buy. In the October quarter of 2014, Apple sold 39.272 million iPhones for $23.678 billion in revenue. 

Apple beat even the highest analyst estimations. Apple was expected to report iPhone sales of around 66.5 million, according to analysts. The highest prediction was 71.5 million units and comes from The Braeburn Group's Kirk Burgess, and the lowest was 61 million from Piper Jaffray's Gene Munster (the guy who is still determined that Apple will launch a television set).

Apple doesn't break down iPhone sales into specific models, but trustworthy and previously accurate analyst Ming-Chi Kuo has suggested that the iPhone 6 will represent the largest proportion of iPhone sales with a significant lead over the iPhone 6 Plus.

One reason for the increase in iPhone sales is thought to be the popularity of the Apple's smartphone in China. Apple is expected to have sold more iPhones in China than in the US for the first time. Indeed, according to Canalys: "The incredible popularity of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus in China in Q4 2014 has led Apple to take first place in the Chinese smart phone market for the first time by units shipped."

Apparently Apple is "riding the large screen and LTE trends in China, which have been vital to its success, along with a well-timed launch and a clampdown on gray exports of its products out of Hong Kong," according to Canalyst.

Apple financial results Q1 2015: How many iPads did Apple sell?

Apple watchers will be keeping a close eye on iPad sales this quarter, as they've been shaky over the past year or so. iPad sales were better than last quarter - which is to be expected given the fact that the new iPad Air 2 launched in October - but they were not as high as the year-before quarter.

In the first quarter of 2015 (October - December 2014) Apple sold 21.419 million iPads, making $8.985 in revenue. In the same quarter a year earlier Apple sold 26.035 million iPads and saw revenue of $11.468 billion.

Last quarter, Apple sold 12.316 million iPads, which was down from the 13.3 million in the previous quarter.

Q1 2015 represents the first quarter of the iPad Air 2 and iPad mini 3's availability, as well as the availability of the reduced price iPad mini and iPad mini 2, so we were hoping for a boost in sales and a better outlook for the iPad.

Analysts were expecting 21.5 million iPad sales thanks to Apple's new iPads, which is close to Apple's announced figure.

However, there's bound to be talk about whether or not Apple will continue to update the iPad yearly or begin updating it less often. There may also be speculation about whether or not the rumoured iPad Pro could help the market or whether the decreasing iPad sales mean that the new product will be a flop.

Apple CEO Tim Cook is likely to address the declining iPad sales and shed some light on whether there are concerns within the company about the decline.

Apple financial results Q1 2015: How many Macs did Apple sell?

Apple has been impressing us with its Mac sales figures over the past few quarters, far surpassing analyst expectations and growing year-on-year and growing market share in the PC market despite the overall decline of PC sales.

We've seen yet another good quarter for the Mac. Q1 2015 saw Apple sell 5.519 million Macs, seing $6.944 in revenue from those sales. In the year ago quater those figurs were 4.837 million and $6.394 billion. However, the numbers re similar to those in quarter 4: 5.520 million Mac sales, for $6.625 billion in revenue. Someone is bound to notice the slight decline in numbers, but it is significant that despite that Apple actually made more revenue. Perhaps a few 27in Retina iMacs were sold to people who'd prevously have opted for a cheaper version.

Analysts had predicted an average of 5.58 million this quarter, which is slightly above Apple's announced figures. IDC's estimate was even higher, at 5.57 million Macs. The highest analyst prediction was 5.98 million, and comes from Daya Baran of StockChats, while the lowest was 5.10 million from BGC Partners' Colin Gillis.

Apple financial results Q1 2015: What about the iPod?

It's no secret that iPod sales have been falling. Apple sold just 2.6 million iPods last quarter, which represents a steady decline quarter-over-quarter and year-over-year. Apple didn't update its iPod range in 2014 and it's possible that the company will soon decide to discontinue the line. This quarter the iPod has disappeared from Apple's Summary Data sheet.

iPod now sits under 'Other Products' in Apple's Summary Data sheet, the revenue from those sales being $2.689 billion. That category also include Apple TV sales and Beats headphones. Apple doesn't break down unit sales here.

Apple financial results Q1 2015: iTunes and software sales

Apple is seeing huge growth from is iTunes software and services, which in July 2014 CEO Tim Cook described as "the fastest-growing part of our business." It covers all of the content available to download in the iOS App Store and iTunes Stores, in addition to other software and services income.

Apple made $4.6million from iTunes software and services last quarter. In the first fiscal quarter of 2015 that figure was $4.799 billion.

Apple financial results Q1 2015: Apple stock

Apple issued a press release announcing the resuilts and confirming that Apple's board of directors has declared a cash dividend of $.47 per share of the company's common stock (the same dividend as was issued last quarter). The dividend is payable on February 12, 2015, to shareholders of record as of the close of business on February 9, 2015.

Luca Maestri, Apple's CFO, said: "We spent over $8 billion on our capital return program, bringing total returns to investors to almost $103 billion, over $57 billion of which occurred in just the last 12 months."

Read: Complete guide to buying Apple shares

Apple financial results Q2 2015: predictions

Apple is providing the following guidance for its fiscal 2015 second quarter:

• revenue between $52 billion and $55 billion
• gross margin between 38.5 per cent and 39.5 per cent
• operating expenses between $5.4 billion and $5.5 billion
• other income/(expense) of $350 million
• tax rate of 26.3 per cent

Apple financial results Q1 2015: New product hints

Apple tends to drop hints about future products during its earnings call, particularly when the call gets opened up to questions from analysts and press, so we'll be keeping our ears tuned to make sure we don't miss any. We're hoping to hear more about the Apple Watch's release date in particular. We'll update this article with those hints and of course the official financial results as reported by Apple when they are announced.

Head to page three for the results from Apple's Q4 2014 earnings call.