Apple sells lower than expected 77.3M iPhones in fiscal first quarter; iPhone X sales appear strong

Apple sells lower than expected 77.3M iPhones in fiscal first quarter; iPhone X sales appear strong
Apple was hoping to stop all the talk about disappointing iPhone X sales with the release of its fiscal first quarter earnings; instead, there is more confusion. The tech giant reported sales of 77.3 million iPhone units during the three month period from October through December 2017, with iPhone revenue amounting to $61.6 billion. Analysts were looking for Apple to report sales of 80.2 million handsets. Last year's fiscal first quarter saw Apple ring up a record 78.3 million iPhones, resulting in a year-over-year decline.

Bulls might look at the average revenue per unit, which came in at $797, much higher than the $755.78 forecast. This could indicate better than expected sales of Apple's highest priced phone, the beleaguered iPhone X. Depending on what day of the week it is, analysts have either been raving about sales of the device, or complaining that they are not moving. Recently, Apple reportedly told suppliers that it was cutting production of the ten-year anniversary model by 50% to 20 million units for the fiscal second quarter. But other suppliers say that the production cut is much lower in scope.

Apple also noted that the iPad recorded its third straight quarter of revenue growth, and the Apple Watch had its best quarter ever. The timepiece recorded 50% unit growth for the fourth consecutive three-month period. Also scoring record quarters were Apple Pay, iCloud, and Apple Music.

For the current quarter, which started on New Year's Day and ends at the end of March, Apple predicted iPhone sales of $60 to 62 billion. That is below the $65.9 billion expected by analysts for the fiscal second quarter.

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Overall, Apple reported revenue of $88.3 billion for the period, with profits of $3.89 per share. Both figures topped Wall Street predictions. The vault now contains $285 billion in cash.

Investors are having a hard time figuring out whether the report is bullish or bearish for the company. After hours, Apple's shares are a few pennies off of Thursday's closing price of $167.78.

source: Apple

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