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by Jason Snell & Dan Moren

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By Jason Snell for Macworld

How the heck did Apple make so much money last quarter?

The last few years, Apple has been on such a ride that it can be hard to put it into proper context. Almost every quarter sets a business record. And yet this quarter, covering the first three months of calendar 2021, is something special.

I’ve been reading Apple financial statements and generating charts about those statements for the better part of a decade now. And this is the first time that I’ve looked at the numbers posted on Apple’s website and thought that some sort of clerical error had been made. Perhaps a harried Apple accountant had gotten a little twitchy with their numeric keypad and put in a few extra digits here and there.

But no, it’s true. Apple generated nearly $90 billion in revenue during the second quarter of 2021. Not only is that a whole lot of money, but it’s just a couple billion shy of the amount of revenue it generated during the holiday quarter of calendar year 2019. That quarter set an all-time record for Apple, bested only by the holiday quarter of calendar 2020.

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