Apple sold nearly 50 million iPhones and revenue rose to a record $54.5bn in Q4, but the American technology giant’s results still fell short of Wall Street’s revenue forecast.

For its 13-week fiscal 2013 first quarter, ended December 29 2012, the company’s record quarterly revenue rose by 8.2 billion ($54.5 billion), compared to $46.3 billion in the 14-week quarter a year ago.

The company also reported a flat quarterly net profit of $13.1 billion, the same amount as net profit during the 14-week quarter a year ago.

Despite some of the record results, for the third straight quarter iPhone sales came in below expectations – but not by much.

Just short of projections

Apple sold 47.8 million iPhones in its fiscal first quarter, up 10.8 million units from the year before, but that fell short of the 50 million that analysts on average had projected.

The $54.5 billion revenue was also less than the $55 billion forecast by Wall Street.

Following the announcement of the figures, shares in Apple dropped 10 per cent. Some experts have suggested that Apple may struggle to keep up with the smartphone boom, particularly as major players such as Google’s Android operating system, which is used by Samsung and HTC, continue to do well.

Apple’s CEO Tim Cook said they were ‘thrilled’ with record revenue and sales of more than 75 million iOS devices in a single quarter.

Mac and iPod sales drop

Apple also sold a record 22.9 million iPads during the quarter, compared to 15.4 million in the same quarter the year before. A total of 4.1 million Macs, compared to 5.2 million, were sold and 12.7 million iPods were bought in the same period, compared to 15.4 million in the year-ago quarter.

Apple’s CFO Peter Oppenheimer said: “We’re pleased to have generated over $23 billion in cash flow from operations during the quarter.

“We established new all-time quarterly records for iPhone and iPad sales, significantly broadened our ecosystem and generated Apple’s highest quarterly revenue ever.”

Apple is forecasting revenue of $41 billion to $43 billion in the current, second fiscal quarter, lagging the average Wall Street forecast of more than $45 billion.


[Image via mobilesandlaptop]