Weak iPhone demand continues to hit Apple

Weak iPhone demand continues to hit Apple

The Apple store in Regent Street, London.

Apple has reported a fall in annual revenue for the first time in over 10 years on Wednesday, after another quarter of weak demand for iPhone handsets.

The group sold 45.51 million iPhones in the three months to 24 September, beating analyst estimates but falling for the third quarter in a row. Quarterly revenue fell to $46.9 billion in the three months to September, down from $51.5 billion in the same quarter last year.

In Greater China, traditionally one of the group’s strongest markets, revenue also fell 30 percent after a 33 percent fall the quarter before. This compares to the same period last year, where revenue from Greater China doubled.

In a statement, Apple CEO Tim Cook said:

“Our strong September quarter results cap a very successful fiscal 2016 for Apple.

“We’re thrilled with the customer response to iPhone 7, iPhone 7 Plus and Apple Watch Series 2, as well as the incredible momentum of our Services business, where revenue grew 24 percent to set another all-time record.”

“We are pleased to have generated $16.1 billion in operating cash flow, a new record for the September quarter,” said Luca Maestri, Apple’s CFO. “We also returned $9.3 billion to investors through dividends and share repurchases during the quarter and have now completed over $186 billion of our capital return program.”

Alongside the statement, the company forecasted a higher-than-expected holiday season revenue of between $76 billion and $78 billion.

Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) shares were fell over 3 percent in pre-market trade.