During Tuesday's conference call in which Apple's financial report for the first quarter of fiscal 2011 was discussed, the company's chief operating officer, Tim Cook, revealed that more than 160 million iOS devices have been sold as of December. The lightweight iOS operating system runs on the iPhone, iPod touch, iPad and Apple TV.
Cook said he believes that iOS is an important part of Apple's success in the mobile space, especially for smartphones and tablets. He said Apple's primary competition, the Google Android mobile operating system, can't match that strategy.
"We think that our integrated approach is much better for the end user, because it takes out all of the complexity for the end user, instead of making the end user a systems integrator themselves," Cook said. "I don't know about you, but I don't know many people who want to be systems integrators."
The rate of sales for iOS devices is rapidly increasing. In fact, it was just last June that Apple crossed the 100 million milestone in terms of total iOS devices.
The top-selling iOS device for Apple is the iPhone, which moved a record 16.2 million units last quarter alone. And Apple also revealed on Tuesday that the average selling price of its smartphone is only growing over time.
In the last quarter, the iPhone ASP hit $625 with carrier subsidies, which typically cover the bulk of the cost when a consumer purchases a new phone with a two-year contract. For comparison, last quarter the iPhone had an ASP of $610, while in the third quarter of fiscal 2010 it was $595.
Even with record sales of 16.2 million iPhones in the quarter, Apple struggled to meet consumer demand. Cook, along with Apple Chief Financial Officer Peter Oppenheimer, lamented that they wished the company could have manufactured more handsets in the quarter to satisfy demand.
The iPhone accounted for $10.5 billion in revenue for the quarter, representing the largest chunk of the company's reported $26.74 billion in total revenue. The iPhone grew in sales 86 percent in the December quarter, and is now being deployed at 88 of the Fortune 100 companies.
Apple expects even greater iPhone sales in the near future, with the impending launch of a CDMA variant of the iPhone 4 on the Verizon network in the U.S., starting Feb. 10. Cook said he does not believe the new CDMA handset will reduce the average selling price of the iPhone in the current quarter, and he noted that there is pent up demand for the smartphone from customers on the largest wireless network in the U.S.
"We are truly thrilled to be working with the Verizon team," Cook said. "They have built quite a company and earned a great deal of respect from their customers, and some of them have waited a long time to get the iPhone.