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Apple drives one supplier's profits, despite PC shipment drop

Apple's premium-priced line of computers has provided a boost for Taiwanese notebook maker Quanta Computer, even though the company's overall shipments are down.

In November, Quanta's notebook shipments shrunk by about 100,000 to a total of 3.8 million. But the company still reported a record $2.88 billion in revenue in November — its highest month ever. That was a 36.6 percent year-over-year increase, and represents 8.5 percent growth from a month prior, according to DigiTimes.

"The increased proportion of Apple models, which had higher selling prices, as well as strong all-in-one PC and consumer electronics shipments helped the company's November revenues reach a new high."

In 2008, Quanta was awarded a contract to build Apple's slim MacBook Air.

Apple's MacBook line has been consistently shown to be a top seller, even though its price comes in higher than competitors. In June of this year, it was found that Apple made up 91 percent of the computer market priced $1,000 and up. Apple sells only three consumer computers below $1,000: the 13-inch MacBook, and both versions of the Mac mini.

Competitors like Microsoft have tried to peg those higher prices as an "Apple tax." And while the growth of low-cost netbooks has led many to speculate that Apple would try to compete in that low-margin market, the Cupertino, Calif., company has passed on that segment thus far.

So far, the strategy has been working. Last quarter, Apple reported a 46 percent increase in profits as the company sold a record 3 million Macs. That helped the company earn a total of $1.67 billion for the three-month period ending in September.