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Microsoft Reports Record First Quarter Earnings

by Sean P. Aune | October 28, 2010October 28, 2010 8:00 am PDT

Microsoft announced its earnings for the first quarter of fiscal year 2011 yesterday, and when you take this information into account with Apple’s latest report, it certainly seems that the tech sector is making it through the current recession pretty well.

Microsoft reported a total for the quarter of $16.2 billion, an increase of 25 percent from the same quarter last year which saw revenues of $12.9 billion at the time.  Most of the rise in sales was on account of sales of Windows 7 and Microsoft Office to the enterprise sector, and this led to $5.41 billion in net profits, an increase of 52 percent over last year.

Windows 7 logoNumerous pundits are bing very quick to point out that Apple did $20.34 billion in the same quarter, but we feel this is slightly disingenuous to do so.

While it’s true these companies compete in the realm of a few items such as operating systems, a few pieces of software and MP3 players, they are very different companies.  If matched the companies up only on the products that they both sell, we feel it would be a very different match up.  Apple is selling a ton of hardware, something Microsoft does very little of.

Even with the introduction of Windows Phone 7, even if 14 million handsets get activated in a quarter, the same number as Apple’s last report, Microsoft is gong to report significantly less revenue than its competition.  This is due to the fact that Microsoft is merely licensing the software to other companies as opposed to Apple selling a piece of hardware that is several hundred dollars more.

Yes, Apple, beat Microsoft, and the company is still losing money in its online division, but overall the company is healthy, and $16.2 billion in a three month period is certainly nothing to sneeze at.


Sean P. Aune

Sean P. Aune has been a professional technology blogger since July 2007, but his love of tech dates back to at least 1976 when his parents bought...

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