Apple posts another record quarter as Cook raises doubts over LTE iPhone

Cupertino based computer, handset and tablet manufacturer Apple has posted yet another record quarter, raking in second quarter revenue of US$24.67bn, producing a net profit of US$5.99bn. This was achieved with the sale of 3.76 million Mac computers, a 28 per cent increase over the year-ago quarter, and 18.65 million iPhones, representing growth of 113 per cent.

A total of 4.69 million iPads were shifted too, 36 per cent down on the first quarter – although that quarter included the very busy Christmas shopping season. The only real blot on Apple’s copy book was a 17 per cent drop in iPod sales, at just over nine million units.

Apple could well be looking for the iPhone 5 to plug this gap, with many analysts suggesting that the iPhone refresh will move from its regular June/July spot to September, which is when the company usually updates its iPod line.

While it is widely agreed that Apple is keen to release an LTE capable iPhone, there is much debate as to when this will be. Some have suggested that the shift to a September deadline for the next iPhone is to enable Apple to ready an LTE handset, with its major customer AT&T looking to have its LTE network ready mid-2011, rivalling Verizon Wireless. However, speaking at the conference call following its quarterly results, Apple’s acting chief executive Tim Cook appeared to dampen the likelihood of an LTE iPhone appearing this year by repeating the reservations he made when Apple launched the Verizon iPhone stating that, “the first generation of LTE chipsets force a lot of design compromises with the handset, and some of those we are just not willing to make”.

Instead, Cook focussed attention on bringing the iPhone to more carriers raising the possibility that the iPhone could soon come to T-Mobile USA or Sprint.

Separately, Apple is suing Samsung for what it feels is “slavish” copying of its iPad with the Korean company’s Galaxy Tab line of tablets, alleging widespread infringement of its patents.

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