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Wall Street praises Apple as tech giant becomes less reliant on iPhone

03 May 2018, 02:05 | Francis Delgado

Apple makes nearly two thirds of its money from iPhone salesDADO RUVIC REUTERS

Apple makes nearly two thirds of its money from iPhone sales

But investors were cheered by progress elsewhere - on confirmation the company was to reward shareholders through proceeds it was repatriating to the USA following tax reforms announced by Donald Trump.

Apple bought shares worth $23.5bn in the three months to March.

But critics say the actions can take money away from potential investments in hiring or research and development, and can increase economic inequality because they typically benefit wealthier people. Analysts believe the heavy emphasis on buybacks will bolster share prices.

"As we're able to grow the services business, that should provide a positive (to margins), a tailwind", Maestri said in an interview. "The increasing installed base of iPhones is a good sign for the company, given the strong stickiness and aspiration value of the brand".

Apple bought US$23.5 billion of stock in the March quarter, and said it planned to hike its dividend 16 per cent, compared with a 10.5 per cent increase a year ago.

Apple said Tuesday afternoon it would buy back $100 billion in shares and raise its quarterly dividend 16%, to 73 cents a share from 63 cents a share. Following the completion of the transaction, the insider now owns 64,475 shares in the company, valued at $11,261,203.50. "It's an area of great interest where we think we can make a big difference", he said on the call.

And Apple plans to spend $1 billion developing original video content, although it doesn't charge for its shows on its Apple TV device.

It also was a record quarter for the company's services division, which posted revenue of more than $9 billion for the first time. Most of the number crunchers following Apple raised their target price on the stock and their estimate of iPhone sales for the current quarter. Revenue rose 16 per cent to US$61.1 billion.

Apple had a record sale of 52.2 million iPhone, although according to FactSet a firm which performs market research the sales is slightly below what has been estimated.

Syria government, rebels reach evacuation deal in southern Damascus: State media
At least 85 regime personnel and 74 IS fighters have been killed in ten days of fighting in southern Damascus , the monitor said. As part of the deal state establishments will return to the area to provide services to citizens after the evacuation.

The doomsday expectations surrounding the iPhone X came from a string of reports that third-party hardware suppliers slowed down production, signaling declining demand to analysts.

The quarterly revenue of $61.1 billion was an increase of 16 per cent from the year-ago quarter and worldwide sales accounted for 65 per cent of the quarter's revenue.

Global sales accounted for 65% of the quarter's revenue, .

"There's obviously huge opportunities there for us and we have extremely low share in that market overall and so we're putting a lot of energy there", Cook said on Tuesday's call with analysts.

So the fall in the iPhone ASP suggests that there is a limit to the price that consumers are willing to pay for a smartphone.

Contrary to multiple reports, Apple's new iPhone X has been the company's best-selling smartphone "every week" during 2018, CEO Tim Cook said, unveiling the company's second-quarter financial results.

Apple's share price surged more than 4 percent to US$176.57 on Wednesday, giving the company a market capitalization of US$895 billion.

According to CyberMedia Research, Apple sold only 5,85,004 iPhones in India in the quarter, compared with 7,52,544 in the same quarter a year ago, a 22 per cent decline.



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