Apple Is Downloading Money at a Record Pace


On Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) last quarterly conference call, in October, CEO Tim Cook predicted that “it’s going to be an iPad Christmas.” The world’s largest technology company often receives a great deal of attention for its gadgets that routinely sell like winter gear during a polar vortex, but investors should not ignore Apple’s impressive App Store.

Apple announced Tuesday that customers spent more than $10 billion on the App Store in 2013, the biggest haul since Apple first launched the store in July 2008. In fact, revenue in December alone totaled $1 billion. App Store customers downloaded almost 3 billion apps in December, making it the most successful month in App Store history.

“We’d like to thank our customers for making 2013 the best year ever for the App Store,” said Eddy Cue, Apple’s senior vice president of Internet Software and Services. “The lineup of apps for the holiday season was astonishing and we look forward to seeing what developers create in 2014.”

Apple’s App Store offers more than 1 million apps to iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch users in 155 countries around the globe. Since developers keep 70 percent of revenue from the App Store, Apple’s revenue for the app store in 2013 totaled $3 billion.

Apple is a money-making machine. For the three months ended October 28, the company posted a net profit of $7.5 billion, or $8.26 per diluted share. Revenue increased to $37.5 billion from $36 billion a year earlier. The results were better than expected. Apple sold 33.8 million iPhones in the quarter compared to 26.9 million iPhones in the year-ago quarter. It was the best September quarter for iPhones in Apple’s history. Apple also sold 14.1 million iPads and 4.6 million Macs.

Shares of Apple traded slightly higher in morning trading on Tuesday. As the chart below shows, Apple has rallied more than 40 percent since a low of $385 in April.

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