Apple TV Posts Record Sales in Q1

Apple says its overhauled streaming-video box sold better than in any other quarter

Apple says its streaming-video box Apple TV was a highlight in its latest quarterly results, which beat expectations on profit despite revenue coming in shy of analysts’ estimates.

Last year, the gadget giant overhauled Apple TV, which connects televisions to the Internet to stream video and play games. It was the first refresh of the product in more than three years, a period that put Apple on the sidelines even as online video surged in popularity.

The fiscal first-quarter results are the first to reflect sales of the new product, providing the first hint at how significant the TV category may be for Apple in the future.

“Our team delivered Apple’s biggest quarter ever, thanks to the world’s most innovative products and all-time record sales of iPhone, Apple Watch and Apple TV,” CEO Tim Cook said in a statement.

The company’s “other products” category, which includes sales of Apple TV, Apple Watch and other items, increased revenue by 62 percent, although its total sales are still a fraction of those for the iPhone.

The company sold 74.8 million iPhones in the latest quarter, an increase of less than a percent. The iPhone is Apple’s most important product at about two-thirds of total revenue, and the health of its sales are the biggest indicator of the company’s trajectory.

In the period ended Dec. 26, Apple reported a profit of $18.36 billion, or $3.28 a share, compared with $18.02 billion, or $3.06 a share, a year earlier. Analysts on average expected earnings of $3.23 a share.

Revenue rose 1.7 percent to $75.87 billion. The consensus estimate was for $76.54 billion, though the company delivered sales within the guidance range it provided in October.

Sales outlook for the current quarter was modest. Apple predicted revenue between $50 billion and $53 billion, compared with expectations for $55.48 billion on average.

Shares were down 1.2 percent at $98.79 in after-hours trading.