Apple still too cool for recession, posts best non-holiday quarter

PC sales were down, major firms posted bleak results, and the recession was still in full swing last quarter. How did Apple do? Oh, not too bad: it only posted its best non-holiday fiscal quarter ever.

Here's how numbers for Apple's third fiscal quarter, which ended on June 27, compare with the company's past results:

  Q3FY08 Q2FY09 Q3FY09
Revenue $7.46 billion $8.16 billion $8.34 billion
Net profit $1.07 billion $1.21 billion $1.23 billion
Gross margin 34.8% 36.4% 36.3%

By the way, Apple stresses that these figures don't show the whole picture, since GAAP rules require the firm to spread out revenue from iPhones and Apple TVs over those products' economic lives (roughly 24 months). Without deferring revenue and costs, Apple claims it enjoyed $9.74 billion revenue and $1.94 billion net income last quarter.

Much of Apple's success last quarter came from growing iPhone and Mac shipments, judging by the shipment numbers below:

  Q3FY08 Q2FY09 Q3FY09
Macs 2.5 million 2.2 million 2.6 million
iPods 11 million 11 million 10.2 million
iPhones 0.7 million 3.8 million 5.2 million

Interestingly, shipments of iPods actually fell last quarter. That could well be because some folks choose to purchase iPhones instead of stand-alone music players—especially now that the iPhone 3G is down to $99. In any case, this is the second time Apple has posted recession-defying results this year.

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