Apple Posts First-Ever iPod Sales Declines

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The iPod finally peaked during the recent quarter, thanks to declines across the shuffle, classic, and nano models.

But the iPod touch, a close cousin to the iPhone, continued to gain.  According to financial disclosures issued Tuesday, iPod sales reached 10.2 million during the recent fiscal quarter, down 7.3 percent from the comparable quarter last year.  “We expect the MP3 player business to decline over time,” said Apple chief financial officer Peter Oppenheimer.

What happens next?  The iPod will most likely continue to post solid numbers in the quarters ahead, though the mature part of the product arc may have arrived.  Now, consumers are shifting towards the iPhone and iPod touch, in bigger numbers.  During the period, Apple sold 5.2 million iPhones, up 40.5 percent from the first calendar quarter.  That was sparked by the introduction of the 3GS, a device currently experiencing heavy demand and supply shortages.

And the rest?  Apple sold 2.6 million Macs, a 4 percent year-over-year gain.  On a broader scale, revenues and profits beat estimates, offering more optimism to the tech sector.  Specifically, revenues gained 11.8 percent to $8.34 billion, and profits lifted 15 percent to $1.23 billion, one of the best finishes in Apple history.

Report by Alexandra Osorio.