Apple predicts strong holiday season

Apple predicts strong holiday season

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A sales rebound in China, record purchases through the App Store and robust demand for its latest iPhone: Apple is "firing on all cylinders".

Apple boss Tim Cook made the comments on Thursday after the firm released its quarterly financial statement.

The firm's revenue for the three months to the end of September increased 12% year-on-year, hitting $52.6bn (£40.3bn).

Mr Cook said the momentum should continue into the holiday season.

"We expect it to be our biggest quarter ever," he said.

Apple is counting on the release of three new models of the iPhone, including the high-end iPhone X, to advance its sales figures.

But the firm, which made more than 60% of its revenue outside the US, is already seeing solid growth.

It sold more than 46.6 million phones in the July-to-September period, up 3% year-on-year. That produced $28.8bn or more than half of its revenue.

Other products, including the Mac, iPad and Apple Watch, also did well, growing in the double digits.

The firm got another boost from its services division, which includes the App store, Apple Pay and its music subscriptions service.

That unit made $8.5bn in the quarter, up 34% year-on-year, thanks in part to a one-time adjustment.

Though its costs increased, Apple said profits were $10.7bn in the quarter, increasing 18%.

The firm released the results after markets in the US closed, but shares jumped more than 2% in after-hours trade.

Augmented reality future?

Apple said it expects to make between $84bn and $87bn in revenue in the upcoming quarter - a record for the company.

The earnings release coincided with the first official sales of the new iPhone X, which retails for £1,149, abandons the signature "home" button and can be unlocked with face-scanning technology, among other new features.

Mr Cook said the phone positioned Apple ahead of the curve when it comes to new augmented reality or AR technologies.

He said the technologies were poised to "change everything". For example, he said, shoppers will be able to see how furniture looks in their living rooms before making a purchase.

"I view AR as profound, not today... but what it will be, what it can be," he said. "I think it's profound and I think Apple is in a really unique position to lead in this area."

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