Mac Musings

A Closer Look at Apple's Financials

Daniel Knight - Oct. 21, 2000 -

There are a lot of ways to look at Apple's sales figures for the past quarter, but the most stunning is that over half the computers sold were iMacs.

Overall unit sales are up roughly 10% over the third quarter and 40-45% over fourth quarter of fiscal 1999.

The big surprise: Apple sold 107,000 Cubes, making it more popular than either the iBook or the PowerBook. Not bad for a computer many consider overpriced, even if that does fall short of Apple's projections.

The down side: Power Mac G4 sales were down, due in part to people buying the G4 Cube instead. Combined sales for the G4 models were 376,000, a 7% increase over the previous quarter.

The Pismo is selling at a slower pace than the Lombard did. If not for the addition of the iBook to the lineup late last year, that number would undoubtedly be higher, but total portable sales would probably be well below 175,000. Apple has advanced from 10% portables in FY 1999 to about 16% in the last quarter. Industry analysts project the entire PC industry moving toward the 25% mark in the coming year.

The big disappointment: Apple's gross margins dropped from 28.7% in FY1999Q4 to 25.0% for FY2000Q4. Apple is predicting reduced profits for the current quarter as well.

Still, Apple has increased unit sales and revenues by at least 40% over the same quarter last year - an impressive accomplishment. It does make you wonder why Wall Street drove Apple stock below the $20 mark when it was in the $50 range not too many weeks ago.

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Dan Knight has been using Macs since 1986, sold Macs for several years, supported them for many more years, and has been publishing Low End Mac since April 1997. If you find Dan's articles helpful, please consider making a donation to his tip jar.

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