Apple has unveiled its latest quarterly profits and while it missed Wall Street forecasts they did make a healthy £5.1 billion profit.
Profits in the last three months were up from $8bn (£5.1bn) compared to the same time last year, with revenues up 27% at $36Bn. Apple sold 26.9 million iPhones in the quarter to September 29, which was actually above expectations, and they sold 14 million iPads, which was below expectations.
The slower than expected sales of its iPad was put down to consumers holding off on purchases due to rumours that Apple would launch an iPad Mini, which was unveiled this week in California.
“We were happy with the 14 million iPad sales in the quarter. It exceeded our expectations,” said Apple finance director Peter Oppenheimer.
“But as the summer went on, the rumours were pretty rampant about the iPhone and iPad,” he added.
Unsurprisingly Apple’s shares fell by 1.5% in after hours trading on Wall Street as the market digested the results, though, analyst didn’t seemed to worried about the results.
“The iPhones came in better than expected. The shortfall was on the iPad for two reasons. There was a pause on the iPad ahead of the iPad Mini. Everyone was waiting for that,” said Shaw Wu, analyst at Sterne Agee.
“And then they replaced the third generation iPad with the fourth generation and they stopped shipping the third generation to the channels. So it was customers waiting for the iPad mini and drawing down the third generation,” he added.
Apple is a expected to have a much better final quarter with the release of a slew of new products including the new iPhone 5, which has been on sale for nine days, and a raft of other devices including the Retina 13-inch MacBook Pro, new iMac, iPad Mini, and Mac Mini.
Tim Cook, Apple’s chief executive, said in a statement: “We’re entering this holiday season with the best iPhone, iPad, Mac and iPod products ever, and we remain very confident in our new product pipeline.”
Apple’s computer operation, which includes their Macintosh range of computers, rose 1% compared to the same period last year. However it wasn’t such good news for the sales of their iPod division as sales fell sharply by 19% to 5.3 million units.
The fourth quarter figures took Apple’s profits for the year to $41.7bn, up 45% on 2011, with revenues of $156.5bn, a 61% increase.
In other Apple related news, the tech giant was force to issue and apology to Samsung with regards to claims the Korean technology company had infringed its patents, after the High Court of Justice of England and Wales rules the Samsung electronics hadn’t copied his designs.
On 9th July 2012 the High Court of Justice of England and Wales ruled that Samsung Electronic (UK) Limited’s Galaxy Tablet Computer, namely the Galaxy Tab 10.1, Tab 8.9 and Tab 7.7 do not infringe Apple’s registered design No. 0000181607-0001. A copy of the full judgment of the High court is available on the following link www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWHC/Patents/2012/1882.html.
In the ruling, the judge made several important points comparing the designs of the Apple and Samsung products:
“The extreme simplicity of the Apple design is striking. Overall it has undecorated flat surfaces with a plate of glass on the front all the way out to a very thin rim and a blank back. There is a crisp edge around the rim and a combination of curves, both at the corners and the sides. The design looks like an object the informed user would want to pick up and hold. It is an understated, smooth and simple product. It is a cool design.”
“The informed user’s overall impression of each of the Samsung Galaxy Tablets is the following. From the front they belong to the family which includes the Apple design; but the Samsung products are very thin, almost insubstantial members of that family with unusual details on the back. They do not have the same understated and extreme simplicity which is possessed by the Apple design. They are not as cool.”
That Judgment has effect throughout the European Union and was upheld by the Court of Appeal on 18 October 2012. A copy of the Court of Appeal’s judgment is available on the following link www.bailii.org/ew/cases/EWCA/Civ/2012/1339.html. There is no injunction in respect of the registered design in force anywhere in Europe.
However, in a case tried in Germany regarding the same patent, the court found that Samsung engaged in unfair competition by copying the iPad design. A U.S. jury also found Samsung guilty of infringing on Apple’s design and utility patents, awarding over one billion U.S. dollars in damages to Apple Inc. So while the U.K. court did not find Samsung guilty of infringement, other courts have recognized that in the course of creating its Galaxy tablet, Samsung willfully copied Apple’s far more popular iPad.