Apple has just posted another record quarter for its final fiscal fourth quarter. While much of the spotlight attention will be shined on iPad and iPhone sales a careful examination of its Mac unit growth shows that the Mac division is healthy. Another way of putting this would be to say that prior to the iPod and its famous “halo effect” if Steve Jobs could have promised Wall Street that the Mac would grow at sequential rates as nice as these investors would have been psyched!
There is no doubting that Apple’s Mac division is being upstaged by its new era product lines (with the exception of the iPod division which is slowing down in growth) but one only needs to look at the bigger picture to see it’s all okay with Steve & Company precisely because the “halo effect” from iPhone in particular keeps pushing Mac sales up at a healthy rate. Of course that rate may be slowing as the iPad begins to both produce a “halo effect” and a “cannibal effect.” (more on that later).
So how healthy are we talking about?
Mac Unit Growth
Let’s start with the quarter to quarter sequential growth. In this quarter Apple’s Mac units grew at just over 12 percent, which is a healthy growth rate. This was the result of shipping more than 400,000 Macs than the previous quarter. Mind you, just a few years ago 400,000 Macs per quarter was approximately one forth the amount of all Macs in that quarter.