Apple posts record profits, Yahoo doesn't

No wonder Jobs is smiling: he isn't dead and Apple just posted billion dollar profits
No wonder Jobs is smiling: he isn't dead and Apple just posted billion dollar profits

Crisis? What crisis?

Apple has shrugged off the world's economic woes to post one of its best quarters ever, with profits of over $1 billion (£590 million) and soaring sales of Macs and iPhones.

A jubilant Steve Jobs crowed, "Apple just reported one of the best quarters in its history, with a spectacular performance by the iPhone—we sold more phones than RIM."

Core values

Apple reported a profit for Q3 of £1.14 billion (£675 million) on sales of nearly $8 billion (£4.7 billion). That's an income of about $1.26 (75p) per diluted share of stock.

Big sellers were Mac computers, which shifted 21% more units than this time last year, and iPhones, which soared over 600% to 6.9m sales during the summer. Even the humble iPod saw a sales boost of 8% compared to the third quarter of 2007.

"We don't yet know how this economic downturn will affect Apple," said Jobs. "But we're armed with the strongest product line in our history, the most talented employees and the best customers in our industry. And $25 billion of cash safely in the bank with zero debt." Which was nice.

Yahoo! Boo hoo

Contrast those numbers with Yahoo!, which also announced financial results today.

The troubled search giant managed to make a meagre $54 million (£32 million) profit on revenues of £1.8 billion (£1.05 billion) last quarter - just a third as much as it earned in Q3 2007.

That equates to a miserable 4 cents (2.5p) per diluted share, a figure that's unlikely to calm shareholders furious at CEO Jerry Yang's refusal to sell the company to Microsoft for $33 (£19.50) a share in May. Yahoo! stock is currently hovering at under $13 (£7.7).

Yahoo! confirmed that hopes to shed 10% of its entire global workforce, saving it up to $400 million (£237 million) by the end of this year.

Mark Harris is Senior Research Director at Gartner.