Feeds

Microsoft rides PCs and Xboxen to rich Q2

Take that, Apple

The essential guide to IT transformation

Microsoft reported fiscal second-quarter earnings that surpassed Wall Street's already lofty expectations, as sales of PCs and Xboxes soared. The company also forecast future results that met or beat analysts' outlook.

Net income for the period ended December 31 rose 79 per cent to $4.7bn, or 50 cents a share, from $2.6bn, or 26 cents, in the same quarter last year. Revenue rose 30 per cent to $16.4bn from $12.5bn.

Microsoft benefited from sales of PCs that grew a heady 15 per cent in the quarter and from sales of the Xbox, which edged out Sony's PlayStation 3 in December to take the No. 2 spot behind Nintendo's Wii.

Of more importance to Microsoft investors were results for current and future quarters. Redmond forecast profit for its fiscal year ending in June to be in the range of $1.85 to $1.88 in earnings per share, with sales of $59.9bn to $60.5bn. That was higher than analysts had expected and higher than a previous forecast of $1.78 to $1.81 and sales of $58.8bn to $59.7 bn.

The upbeat forecast stands in stark contrast to the comparatively dour one Apple gave earlier this week, which was well below Wall Street expectations. That gave rise to speculation that the softening US economy could eat in to iPod and Mac sales as consumers scale back purchases.

It's too early to say if the sooth-sayers in Redmond believe their consumer products will better withstand the coming nuclear winter many expect. That's one possibility. Another is that Microsoft's server software and other products aimed at large businesses will make up for expected shortfalls on the consumer side. That's a luxury Apple doesn't have.

In the current quarter, Microsoft said profit will be 43 cents to 45 cents on sales of $14.3bn to $14.6bn, in line with the average analyst estimates for profit of 44 to 45 cents and sales of $14.7bn.

Microsoft shares rose 5 percent in after-hours trading following the report. They gained 4 percent in regular trading. ®

Next gen security for virtualised datacentres

More from The Register

next story
BBC: We're going to slip CODING into kids' TV
Pureed-carrot-in-ice cream C++ surprise
6 Obvious Reasons Why Facebook Will Ban This Article (Thank God)
Clampdown on clickbait ... and El Reg is OK with this
Twitter: La la la, we have not heard of any NUDE JLaw, Upton SELFIES
If there are any on our site it is not our fault as we are not a PUBLISHER
Facebook, Google and Instagram 'worse than drugs' says Miley Cyrus
Italian boffins agree with popette's theory that haters are the real wrecking balls
Sit tight, fanbois. Apple's '$400' wearable release slips into early 2015
Sources: time to put in plenty of clock-watching for' iWatch
Facebook to let stalkers unearth buried posts with mobe search
Prepare to HAUNT your pal's back catalogue
Ex-IBM CEO John Akers dies at 79
An era disrupted by the advent of the PC
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Endpoint data privacy in the cloud is easier than you think
Innovations in encryption and storage resolve issues of data privacy and key requirements for companies to look for in a solution.
Why cloud backup?
Combining the latest advancements in disk-based backup with secure, integrated, cloud technologies offer organizations fast and assured recovery of their critical enterprise data.
Consolidation: The Foundation for IT Business Transformation
In this whitepaper learn how effective consolidation of IT and business resources can enable multiple, meaningful business benefits.
High Performance for All
While HPC is not new, it has traditionally been seen as a specialist area – is it now geared up to meet more mainstream requirements?