Apple Quarterly Results Could Provide Guidance on iPhone 3GS

Apple will announce the financial results of the third quarter of its 2009 fiscal year in a conference call on July 21. The announcement follows a busy quarter in which iPhone 3GS sales passed 1 million units in three days - led by AT&T but sold in equal parts by the Apple Store, Best Buy and Wal-Mart. The results also come after CEO Steve Jobs returned to work at the company.

Apple will announce the financial results of its third fiscal quarter of 2009 in a conference call on Tuesday, July 21, at 2 p.m. Pacific Time.

On April 22, Apple announced revenue of $8.16 billion for the second quarter, and a net quarterly profit of $1.05 billion, or $1.33 per diluted share. That quarter, said Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer, was Apple's "best non-holiday quarter revenue and earnings in our history."

Since then Apple held its Worldwide Developers Conference, lowered the prices on many of its offerings, updated its mobile operating system and, of course, introduced the iPhone 3G S.

Analyst Brian Marshall with Broadpoint AmTech wrote in a June 23 note to investors that, despite the weak economy, "Apple continues to gain share in large markets while generating tremendous amounts of cash. We believe the stock is a must-own technology bellwether."

Marshall writes that Broadpoint AmTech finds it "extremely impressive" that Apple sold more than 1 million iPhone 3G S units in the first three days it went on sale. The firm breaks down the sales numbers by outlet as such: in approximate terms, AT&T sold 400,000 units; international carriers sold 200,000 units; Best Buy sold 150,000 units, Wal-Mart sold 150,000 units and Apple retail stores, matching the big box shops, also sold approximately 150,000.

For an in-depth look at the iPhone 3G S, please click here.

Regarding Apple stock prices, Marshall wrote, "While APPL has nicely outperformed the broad market year-to-date...we believe APPL has more to offer shareholders in [the second half of 2009]"

During the quarter Apple also faced scrutiny regarding its chief executive, Steve Jobs, who underwent a liver transplant, but portrayed his illness as being a far less serious matter. Jobs received a liver because it was determined he was the sickest patient on the waiting list, but he now seems intent on proving his vigor and getting back to work.

And while stock prices may flutter regarding both Jobs and iPhone sales, "The markets understand that because of Apple's use of subscription accounting, iPhone sales in any given quarter don't much affect the numbers for that quarter," Ezra Gottheil, an analyst with Technology Business Research, clarifies.

On June 18, competitor Research In Motion posted its most recent financial statement, for the first quarter of fiscal year 2010. Revenue was $3.42 billion, which was a 53 percent increase from the same quarter of the previous fiscal year.

Palm, encouraged by the success of the Pre, announced a profit of $20.1 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2009, and adjusted revenue of $113.2 million. "We have officially re-entered the race," said Jon Rubinstein, the man behind the Pre and palm's new chairman and CEO.