• Apple Pulls Ahead of Nokia as Most Profitable Phone Maker

    Apple, Inc. overtook Nokia in the September quarter as the cellphone maker generating the highest total operating profit in the industry, according to a report by research firm Strategy Analytics.

    The Finnish handset maker is still the world's largest by volume. Apple sold 7.4 million iPhones during the July-September quarter, generating sales of $4.5 billion. Nokia sold 108.5 million phones in total in the same quarter, with sales of €6.9 billion ($10.36 billion). When measured by profits, however, Nokia lost in the third quarter against Apple. While Apple does not release profits for its specific product lines, Strategy Analytics estimated Apple's profit on the iPhone at $1.6 billion in the third quarter, compared with Nokia's $1.1 billion. Analyst Alex Spector said:
    With strong volumes, high wholesale prices and tight cost controls, the PC vendor has successfully broken into the mobile phone market in just two years.
    Nokia sued Apple in October for patent infringement, accusing Apple of “attempting to get a free ride” off Nokia’s research on GSM, 3G and WiFi technologies. Apple said it will “vigorously defend” against the lawsuit. However, Piper Jaffray analyst Gene Munster said that Apple could end up paying $6 to $12 of royalties per iPhone.
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