Apple Quarterly Earnings: iPhone Sales Slow During Holidays

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Apple CEO Tim Cook

The tech giant sold 74.8 million phones during the quarter.

Sales of Apple's iPhone are still increasing, but not by much.  

The tech giant on Tuesday reported that fiscal first-quarter sales of the iPhone grew by less than one percent, the lowest growth rate for the device since it was first introduced in 2007. In total, Apple sold 74.8 million of the smartphones. 

Quarterly earnings came in at $3.28 per share and revenue was $75.9 billion, up just shy of 2 percent year-over-year. 

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters were expecting quarterly earnings of $3.23 per diluted share and quarterly revenue of $76.6 billion. Apple in October said it was expecting revenue between $75.5 billion and $77.5 billion. 

Apple stock is down nearly 3 percent during after-hours trading on the news of the revenue miss and slowing iPhone sales. 

CEO Tim Cook, speaking on a conference call with investors, downplayed the company's weak quarterly revenue, noting that it was still an all-time record and came as Apple is "seeing extreme conditions unlike anything we've experienced before just about everywhere we look." 

The company saw lackluster performance of its iPads and Macs. It sold 16.1 million tablets during the quarter and revenue was down 21 percent year-over-year. Just 5.3 million computers sold during the quarter, and revenue declined by 3 percent. 

One bright spot was the company's "other products" category, where it lumps sales of the Apple TV, Apple Watch and Beats headphones. While still the company's small segment, revenue grew by 62 percent. 

While he didn't break out specifics around those products, Cook noted that the Apple Watch hit a quarterly sales record and that it was the best quarter "by far" for Apple TV sales. 

Cook also noted that the company has 10 million paying subscribers for its Apple Music streaming service just four months after it began asking people to pay (there was a free trial period for early subscribers). 

Apple's earnings come amid investor worries about a decline in iPhone sales, which could point to a maturation of its primary business. Last quarter, iPhone sales were up 36 percent to 48 million devices. 

Apple is the most valuable company in the world with a market cap of $552 billion, but weak iPhone sales and a slowing economy in China, an important market for the tech giant, could put the company in danger of losing that distinction to Alphabet, the parent company of Google. Apple stock fell 3.7 percent during 2015.

Despite investor concerns about the Chinese economy, Apple's quarterly revenue in the region grew by 14 percent to $18.4 billion.

The company forecast fiscal second-quarter revenue of between $50 billion and $53 billion. 

Apple shares closed Tuesday up less than one percent at $99.99.

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