AT&T iPhone Service Complaints Don't Slow Record Apple Quarter


Consumer complaints about AT&T's exclusive carrier contract with Apple and the quality of AT&T's service did not dampen enthusiasm for products from Apple in the least, which on Tuesday reported its best financial quarter ever.

High growth in Mac and iPhone sales plus continuing strong sales of iPads drove Apple to record revenue and profit for its first fiscal quarter.

Apple on Tuesday reported that revenue for its first fiscal 2011 quarter, which ended December 25, reached $26.7 billion, up 70 percent over the $15.7 billion it reported for the same quarter last year.

The company said it earned a quarterly profit of $6 billion, or $6.43 per share, up 76 percent over the $3.4 billion, or $3.67 per share, it reported last year.

The growth in sales and profits came thanks to a strong uptick in sales of Apple's most popular products. The company said it sold 4.13 million Macs during the quarter, up 23 percent over last year. It also sold 16.24 million iPhones, up 86 percent; 19.45 million iPods, down 7 percent; and 7.33 million iPads.

That growth comes in spite of widely-reported complaints about the quality of AT&T's iPhone service.

AT&T has been the exclusive provider of voice and data services for the iPhone for four years, and is a leading provider of service for the iPod. However, it's existing exclusive carrier contract for the iPhone has ended, and Verizon is expected to offering the iPhone on February 10.

“We had a phenomenal holiday quarter with record Mac, iPhone and iPad sales. We are firing on all cylinders and we’ve got some exciting things in the pipeline for this year including iPhone 4 on Verizon which customers can’t wait to get their hands on,” said Steve Jobs, Apple’s CEO, in a statement.