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Monday, January 25, 2010, 01:35 pm PT (04:35 pm ET)

Apple profits soar 50% on record sales of 3.36M Macs, 8.7M iPhones

Apple said Monday that first-quarter profits shot up more than 50 percent to $3.38 billion, or $3.67 per diluted share, on record sales of $15.68 billion for the three-month period ended December 26, 2009.

The results compare to revenue of $11.88 billion and net quarterly profit of $2.26 billion, or $2.50 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 40.9 percent, up from 37.9 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 58 percent of the quarter's revenue.

Apple sold an all-time best 3.36 million Macintosh computers during the quarter, representing a 33 percent unit increase over the year-ago quarter. The company also shipped a record 8.7 million iPhones in the quarter, representing 100 percent unit growth over the year-ago quarter. Meanwhile, iPod sales came in at 21 million, representing an eight percent unit decline from the year-ago quarter.

During the quarter Apple elected retrospective adoption of the Financial Accounting Standards Board's amended accounting standards related to certain revenue recognition. Adoption of the new accounting standards significantly changes how the company accounts for certain items, particularly sales of iPhone and Apple TV. Put more simply, the company is now reporting an amended version of GAAP financials as their official results.

"If you annualize our quarterly revenue, it's surprising that Apple is now a $50+ billion company," said Apple chief executive Steve Jobs. "The new products we are planning to release this year are very strong, starting this week with a major new product that we're really excited about."

"We are very pleased to have generated $5.8 billion in cash during the quarter," added Apple chief operating officer Peter Oppenheimer. "Looking ahead to the second fiscal quarter of 2010, we expect revenue in the range of about $11.0 billion to $11.4 billion and we expect diluted earnings per share in the range of about $2.06 to $2.18."

Apple will provide live streaming of its Q1 2010 financial results conference call utilizing QuickTime, Apple's standards-based technology for live and on-demand audio and video streaming. The live webcast will begin at 2:00 p.m. PST on January 25, 2010. AppleInsider will provide full coverage.