Feeds

Microsoft rides PCs and Xboxen to rich Q2

Take that, Apple

Top 5 reasons to deploy VMware with Tegile

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. ®

Beginner's guide to SSL certificates

More from The Register

next story
Phones 4u slips into administration after EE cuts ties with Brit mobe retailer
More than 5,500 jobs could be axed if rescue mission fails
Driving with an Apple Watch could land you with a £100 FINE
Bad news for tech-addicted fanbois behind the wheel
Phones 4u website DIES as wounded mobe retailer struggles to stay above water
Founder blames 'ruthless network partners' for implosion
Radio hams can encrypt, in emergencies, says Ofcom
Consultation promises new spectrum and hints at relaxed licence conditions
Special pleading against mass surveillance won't help anyone
Protecting journalists alone won't protect their sources
Big Content Australia just blew a big hole in its credibility
AHEDA's research on average content prices did not expose methodology, so appears less than rigourous
Vodafone to buy 140 Phones 4u stores from stricken retailer
887 jobs 'preserved' in the process, says administrator PwC
prev story

Whitepapers

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops
Balancing user privacy and privileged access, in accordance with compliance frameworks and legislation. Evaluating any potential remote control choice.
Intelligent flash storage arrays
Tegile Intelligent Storage Arrays with IntelliFlash helps IT boost storage utilization and effciency while delivering unmatched storage savings and performance.
WIN a very cool portable ZX Spectrum
Win a one-off portable Spectrum built by legendary hardware hacker Ben Heck
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?
Beginner's guide to SSL certificates
De-mystify the technology involved and give you the information you need to make the best decision when considering your online security options.