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According to Hoyle

According to Hoyle...

Apple Does It Again



May 2010

by Jonathan Hoyle


You know, this time I was really worried.  After all, how long can they expect to keep this up?  Even Apple has its limits.  And all the experts said so as well.

Well, I figured it was alright anyway.  After all, Apple has had so many back-to-back great quarters, they could afford to have a mediocre one.  Hey, you can't win 'em all, right?

Sheesh, it wasn't even close.  2009 Q2 saw Apple break another record: best non-holiday profits, up a whopping 89.5%.  The record being beat was the one set the last non-holiday quarter.  Sales (another record): up 49%.  Earnings up 86%.

On reports of this, Apple's bolstered stock caused it to surpass Microsoft as having the 2nd largest market capitalization according to the S&P 500's float-adjusted index.  Now it's Exxon, Apple, Microsoft … in that order.  I must admit I'd never thought I'd see the day.  For those looking at full market cap, Microsoft is still ahead, but the edge is narrowing: $275 Billion to $241 Billion.

Oh yeah, there's still a recession going on too, isn't there?

"Okay okay, money, shmoney.  But how are Macs doing?"

Fair point.  After all, if Apple is making oodles of money on iPods and iPhones, and Macs are dying, that's not good news for the Mac faithful.

Well, Mac sales are up 33% from this same point last year.  As the overall PC market has grown only 24%, Mac marketshare is going up, yet again.  Admittedly, the 2.94 million Mac sold this year is not a record … it's in 3rd place overall … behind the last two quarters (which includes the Christmas quarter).  And half of these new Macs go to new users.

And of course, that's not to mention iPhone sales which more than doubled in sales, up 131%.  This is staggering, considering there are still a large number of people (including myself) holding out for when the iPhone comes to Verizon.

And even with iPhones hugely cannibalizing the iPod sales, iPods dipped a mere 1% in sales, which is essentially noise.  When you factor out the iPhone cannibalization effect (those would would have bought an iPod but instead got an iPhone), even the iPod market is growing.  (This is attested to by the fact that Apple's iPod revenue is the best of any non-holiday quarter in its history.)  Apple now owns 70% of the music player market.

We haven't talked about the iPad yet, as its sales won't come into play until next quarter.

So yes, some quarter Apple is going to stop breaking records … and even perhaps show a quarter with mediocre sales.  Yes, of course it will happen.

But it sure as hell didn't happen this time.



To see a list of all the According to Hoyle columns, visit: