Apple: the new Microsoft

From today’s NYTimes.

Apple said on Tuesday that its net income rose 78 percent last quarter, driven by strong sales of the iPhone, the iPad and the Macintosh line of computers.

The results show that Apple is continuing to outpace its competitors in its three major lines of business: computers, phones and tablets. And Apple would be selling even more iPhones and iPads if it could keep up with demand.

“More and more, people’s lives are dependent on desktop and mobile computing,” said Gene Munster, an analyst with Piper Jaffray. “People realize that and are willing to pay up for it, and Apple is capitalizing on that.”

Apple executives said they were pleased with the results, which topped Wall Street’s forecasts.

“IPad is off to a terrific start, more people are buying Macs than ever before, and we have amazing new products still to come this year,” Steven P. Jobs, Apple’s chief executive, said in a news release.

Apple sold nearly 3.3 million iPads in the quarter. Consumers gravitated to higher-priced models of the tablet, helping to create a new segment of Apple’s business that generated revenue of $2.1 billion.

With 8.4 million units sold, the iPhone remains Apple’s biggest and most profitable business, generating $5.3 billion in revenue in the quarter. Most of the sales were of the iPhone 3G and 3GS, since the iPhone 4 went on sale June 24, just three days before the quarter’s end.

And Apple sold 3.47 million Macintosh computers, the most ever in a quarter, dispelling fears that the iPad would hurt those sales.

“Apple was scared that the iPad would cannibalize sales of Macintosh computers,” Mr. Munster said. “That’s not happening.”

Apple said its net income rose to $3.25 billion, or $3.51 a share, a 78 percent jump from a year earlier. Revenue rose 61 percent, to $15.7 billion…

Just to emphasise the point, the market cap of Apple today is $229.2 billion. Microsoft’s is $223.3 billion.