During today’s Q4 earnings call, Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer talked about how “pervasive” iPhone rumors hurt Apple’s fiscal business. While nearly every product saw a significant increase in sales for the fourth fiscal quarter, the iPhone saw a lackluster 17.07 million iPhones sold. That’s 21% year over year growth. The iPad saw 166% year over year growth.
It’s typical for product sales to taper off right before a refresh, but this last fiscal quarter’s iPhone sales were even lower than what Apple expected. Oppenheimer blamed the rumor mill for hurting Apple’s fiscal business with regards to the iPhone.
As quoted by The Next Web,
“Apple’s secrecy creates a certain amount of vacuum, which, as we all know, the Internet abhors,” Oppenheimer said, “and then fills with rumors.”
Rumors suggested that Apple would unveil a completely redesigned iPhone 5, while combating reports claimed that there would be two new iPhones announced at once. There was also the rumor that the iPod touch would be equipped with 3G and positioned as a data-only handset.
Apple believes that such rumors caused more buyers to hold off on purchasing the iPhone 4.
In terms of the future, Apple is positive that it will have a record-breaking holiday quarter for iPhone sales. The iPhone 4S has already sold faster than almost all of Apple’s previous generation iPhones combined, with 4 million units sold on opening weekend.
The iPhone makes up the largest percentage of Apple’s revenue, and holiday sales for the iPhone 4S will undoubtedly propel Apple into an incredible next quarter. When speaking about the iPhone 4S, Oppenheimer said, “we’re thrilled about it and the holiday season.”