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Apple's revenue declines again despite record iPhone and services sales

Services and iPhone revenues set records according to the company's latest quarterly earnings report, but other hardware categories were down.

Photo by Cherlynn Low / Engadget

Apple's latest quarterly earnings report paints a picture of software wins amid something of a hardware slump. In a statement announcing the financial results for its fiscal fourth quarter, the company called out a new all-time high for revenue from its services division. It also highlighted iPhone revenue as having set a September quarter record. However, this marks the fourth consecutive quarter of overall revenue decline, with its earnings of $89.5 billion representing a 1 percent drop year over year. This also means the record-breaking performances of the iPhone and Services divisions did little to offset weakness elsewhere.

The lackluster performance is somewhat understandable, though. The company just had a launch event for its new M3 chips, MacBooks and an iMac this week, none of which can be bought yet. And though the new iPhone 15 lineup and Apple Watches were introduced in September, sales of those devices likely did not account for much of this fiscal quarter’s results. We're also anticipating a November release for new iPads this year, which could further fuel hardware revenue.

Correspondingly, the Mac, iPad and wearables divisions were down this quarter, with the first two taking noticeable hits. Though Apple drummed up significant interest with the Vision Pro headset earlier this year, that device is far from ready to be sold to the public and is unlikely to hit the market until 2024 at the earliest. With holiday shopping about to ramp up, as well as more product releases on the horizon, it’s much more likely that the company’s hardware products will have a greater impact on its bottom line next quarter.