Apple has $46B Quarter – But what does it mean?

Apple knocked it out of the park this quarter – but is it enough?

Apple Inc just had their first $40B quarter ever – to the tune of $46B dollars in revenue. They sold 37M iPhones, 15M iPads and 15M iPods. Additionally, they sold 5M Mac computers. These numbers are ridiculous. Right now Apple is stacking away a ton of cash – so much so that it makes the $100M they wasted on a spurious lawsuit against HTC merely a drop in the bucket.

These numbers are astounding – but are actually not surprising. In this quarter, Apple released the iPhone 4S and was bolstered by holiday spending. But Apple wasn’t the only one with a big quarter. According to Strategy Analytics, 10M Android tablets were shipped in the final quarter of the calendar year. AT&T themselves had a huge quarter, selling 7.6M iPhones.

Samsung, as well, hit record profits this quarter due to strong smartphone sales (I’m sure their memory chips they sell to Apple, etc are not hurting their bottom line either). Samsung sold 35M smartphones in the quarter (a large percentage running Android OS). Samsung made a lot of this money on the Samsung Galaxy SII platform.

So what does it mean: Apple’s money pile is growing, and they are starting to make wise investments. The purchase of Anobit shows a look toward the future. Apple must integrate vertically to protect their supply chain, and might be looking to move manufacturing away from entities such as Foxconn (and the PR nightmare that they are). I’ve said it before, and I’ll say it again – Apple will continue to integrate vertically to protect their interests.

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