AppleDigital TV Gaming Apple has said that it is "thrilled" to see quarterly profits increase 70% to $4.31 billion (£2.73bn), buoyed by strong sales growth across all of its product lines.
Published last night, financial results for the three months to September 25 reveal that the company's overall revenue grew by 66% to $20.34 billion.
That represented the first time Apple has gone past $20bn in a quarter and puts the firm on track to surpass the performance of major rival Microsoft.
Apple sold 3.89 million Mac computers during the quarter, up 27% year-on-year, and shifted 14.1m iPhones, up a colossal 91% year-on-year.
Consumers also purchased 9.05m iPods over the three months and 4.19m iPads. More than half (57%) of the company's sales came from territories outside of the US.
"We are blown away to report over $20 billion in revenue and over $4 billion in after-tax earnings - both all-time records for Apple," said Steve Jobs, Apple's chief executive.
"iPhone sales of 14.1 million were up 91% year-over-year, handily beating the 12.1 million phones RIM sold in their most recent quarter. We still have a few surprises left for the remainder of this calendar year."
Apple chief financial officer Peter Oppenheimer added: "We're thrilled with the performance and strength of our business, generating almost $5.7 billion in cash flow from operations during the quarter.
"Looking ahead to the first fiscal quarter of 2011, we expect revenue of about $23 billion and we expect diluted earnings per share of about $4.80."
In a call yesterday with analysts, Jobs also hinted that Apple's $50bn cash stockpile could be used to fund a major acquisition as part of the firm's future growth strategy.
"We strongly believe one or more strategic opportunities may come along that we're uniquely positioned to take advantage of," he said.
"We don't let it burn a hole in our pocket or motivate us to do stupid things."
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