Apple profits soar 77% on record sales of 3.47 million Macs

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Apple said Tuesday that third-quarter profits rose more than 77 percent to $3.25 billion, or $3.51 per diluted share, on sales of $15.7 billion for the three-month period ended June 26, 2010.

The results compare to revenue of $9.73 billion and net quarterly profit of $1.83 billion, or $2.01 per diluted share, in the year-ago quarter. Gross margin was 39.1 percent compared to 40.9 percent in the year-ago quarter. International sales accounted for 52 percent of the quarter's revenue.

Apple sold 3.47 million Macs during the quarter, representing a new quarterly record and a 33 percent unit increase over the year-ago quarter. The company sold 8.4 million iPhones in the quarter, representing 61 percent unit growth over the year-ago quarter. Apple also sold 9.41 million iPods during the quarter, representing an eight percent unit decline from the year-ago quarter.  Meanwhile, iPad sales totaled of 3.27 million.

"It was a phenomenal quarter that exceeded our expectations all around, including the most successful product launch in Apple's history with iPhone 4," said Steve Jobs, Apple's CEO. "iPad is off to a terrific start, more people are buying Macs than ever before, and we have amazing new products still to come this year."

"We're really pleased to have generated over $4 billion of cash during the quarter," added Peter Oppenheimer, Apple's CFO.  "Looking ahead to the fourth fiscal quarter of 2010, we expect revenue of about $18 billion and we expect diluted earnings per share of about $3.44"  

Apple will provide live streaming of its Q3 2010 financial results conference call beginning at 2:00 p.m. PDT on July 20, 2010. AppleInsider will provide full coverage.