Apple has revealed it shipped an enormous 18.65m iPhones in the first three months of 2011, representing a 113 per cent improvement on this time last year.

The colossal tally is the highlight of the second fiscal quarter earnings report in which Cupertino boasted of a record net profit of $5.9 billion and income of $24.67 billion between January and the end of March.

Earnings for the quarter came in at $6.40 cents per share, with today's financial reports shattering the expectations of Wall Street.

In that period Apple also racked up 4.69 million iPad sales, undoubtedly carried by the iPad 2 launch last month, and 3.76m sales of Mac computers, which were up 28 per cent on the same quarter last year.

The only negative numbers were a 17 per cent fall in iPod sales, to 9.02 million, with iPhone sales perhaps hitting sales of the popular music player.

Firing on all cylinders

Apple CEO Steve Jobs was on hand to express his delight with the numbers, despite his continued absence from daily duties due to medical reasons.

"With quarterly revenue growth of 83 percent and profit growth of 95 percent, we're firing on all cylinders," he told investors.

"We will continue to innovate on all fronts throughout the remainder of the year."