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AAPL > SEC Filings for AAPL > Form 10-K on 31-Oct-2012All Recent SEC Filings

Show all filings for APPLE INC

Form 10-K for APPLE INC


Annual Report

Item 7. Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations

This Item 7, "Management's Discussion and Analysis of Financial Condition and Results of Operations," and other parts of this Form 10-K contain forward-looking statements, within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, that involve risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements provide current expectations of future events based on certain assumptions and include any statement that does not directly relate to any historical or current fact. Forward-looking statements can also be identified by words such as "future," "anticipates," "believes," "estimates," "expects," "intends," "plans," "predicts," "will," "would," "could," "can," "may," and similar terms. Forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and the Company's actual results may differ significantly from the results discussed in the forward-looking statements. Factors that might cause such differences include, but are not limited to, those discussed in Part I, Item 1A of this Form 10-K under the heading "Risk Factors," which are incorporated herein by reference. The following discussion should be read in conjunction with the consolidated financial statements and notes thereto included in Part II, Item 8 of this Form 10-K. All information presented herein is based on the Company's fiscal calendar. Unless otherwise stated, references to particular years or quarters refer to the Company's fiscal years ended in September and the associated quarters of those fiscal years. Each of the terms the "Company" and "Apple" as used herein refers collectively to Apple Inc. and its wholly-owned subsidiaries, unless otherwise stated. The Company assumes no obligation to revise or update any forward-looking statements for any reason, except as required by law.

Executive Overview

The Company designs, manufactures, and markets mobile communication and media devices, personal computers, and portable digital music players, and sells a variety of related software, services, peripherals, networking solutions, and third-party digital content and applications. The Company's products and services include iPhone, iPad, Mac, iPod, Apple TV, a portfolio of consumer and professional software applications, the iOS and OS X operating systems, iCloud, and a variety of accessory, service and support offerings. The Company also sells and delivers digital content and applications through the iTunes Store, App Store, iBookstore, and Mac App Store. The Company sells its products worldwide through its retail stores, online stores, and direct sales force, as well as through third-party cellular network carriers, wholesalers, retailers, and value-added resellers. In addition, the Company sells a variety of third-party iPhone, iPad, Mac and iPod compatible products, including application software, and various accessories through its online and retail stores. The Company sells to consumers; small and mid-sized businesses; and education, enterprise and government customers.

The Company is committed to bringing the best user experience to its customers through its innovative hardware, software, peripherals, and services. The Company's business strategy leverages its unique ability to design and develop its own operating systems, hardware, application software, and services to provide its customers new products and solutions with superior ease-of-use, seamless integration, and innovative design. As part of its strategy, the Company continues to expand its platform for the discovery and delivery of third-party digital content and applications through the iTunes Store. As part of the iTunes Store, the Company's App Store and iBookstore allow customers to discover and download applications and books through either a Mac or Windows-based computer or through "iOS devices," namely iPhone, iPad and iPod touch. The Company's Mac App Store allows customers to easily discover, download and install Mac applications. The Company also supports a community for the development of third-party software and hardware products and digital content that complement the Company's offerings. The Company's strategy also includes expanding its distribution network to effectively reach more customers and provide them with a high-quality sales and post-sales support experience.

The Company participates in several highly competitive markets, including the market for mobile communications and media devices with its iOS devices; personal computers with its Mac computers; portable digital players with iPod; and distribution of third-party digital content and applications with the iTunes Store, App Store, iBookstore, and Mac App Store. While the Company is widely recognized as a leading innovator in

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the markets where it competes, these markets are highly competitive and subject to aggressive pricing. To remain competitive, the Company believes that continual investment in research and development and marketing and advertising is critical to the development and sale of innovative products and technologies. The Company's research and development spending is focused on investing in new hardware and software products, and in further developing its existing products, including iPhone, iPad, Mac, and iPod hardware; iOS and OS X operating systems; and a variety of application software and online services.

The Company uses a variety of direct and indirect distribution channels, such as its retail stores, online stores, and direct sales force, and third-party cellular network carriers, wholesalers, retailers, and value-added resellers. The Company believes that sales of its innovative and differentiated products are enhanced by knowledgeable salespersons who can convey the value of the hardware and software integration, and demonstrate the unique solutions that are available on its products. The Company further believes providing direct contact with its targeted customers is an effective way to demonstrate the advantages of its products over those of its competitors and providing a high-quality sales and after-sales support experience is critical to attracting new and retaining existing customers. To ensure a high-quality buying experience for its products in which service and education are emphasized, the Company continues to expand and improve its distribution capabilities by expanding the number of its own retail stores worldwide. Additionally, the Company has invested in programs to enhance reseller sales by placing high quality Apple fixtures, merchandising materials and other resources within selected third-party reseller locations. Through the Apple Premium Reseller Program, certain third-party resellers focus on the Apple platform by providing a high level of integration and support services, and product expertise.

Critical Accounting Policies and Estimates

The preparation of financial statements and related disclosures in conformity with U.S. generally accepted accounting principles ("GAAP") and the Company's discussion and analysis of its financial condition and operating results require the Company's management to make judgments, assumptions and estimates that affect the amounts reported in its consolidated financial statements and accompanying notes. Note 1, "Summary of Significant Accounting Policies" of the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements in Part II, Item 8 of this Form 10-K describes the significant accounting policies and methods used in the preparation of the Company's consolidated financial statements. Management bases its estimates on historical experience and on various other assumptions it believes to be reasonable under the circumstances, the results of which form the basis for making judgments about the carrying values of assets and liabilities. Actual results may differ from these estimates and such differences may be material.

Management believes the Company's critical accounting policies and estimates are those related to revenue recognition, valuation and impairment of marketable securities, inventory valuation and inventory purchase commitments, warranty costs, income taxes, and legal and other contingencies. Management considers these policies critical because they are both important to the portrayal of the Company's financial condition and operating results, and they require management to make judgments and estimates about inherently uncertain matters. The Company's senior management has reviewed these critical accounting policies and related disclosures with the Audit and Finance Committee of the Company's Board of Directors.

Revenue Recognition

Net sales consist primarily of revenue from the sale of hardware, software, digital content and applications, peripherals, and service and support contracts. The Company recognizes revenue when persuasive evidence of an arrangement exists, delivery has occurred, the sales price is fixed or determinable, and collection is probable. Product is considered delivered to the customer once it has been shipped and title and risk of loss have been transferred. For most of the Company's product sales, these criteria are met at the time the product is shipped. For online sales to individuals, for some sales to education customers in the U.S., and for certain other sales, the Company defers revenue until the customer receives the product because the Company retains a portion of the risk of loss on these sales during transit. The Company recognizes revenue from the sale of hardware products,

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software bundled with hardware that is essential to the functionality of the hardware, and third-party digital content sold on the iTunes Store in accordance with general revenue recognition accounting guidance. The Company recognizes revenue in accordance with industry specific software accounting guidance for the following types of sales transactions: (i) standalone sales of software products, (ii) sales of software upgrades and (iii) sales of software bundled with hardware not essential to the functionality of the hardware.

For multi-element arrangements that include hardware products containing software essential to the hardware product's functionality, undelivered software elements that relate to the hardware product's essential software, and/or undelivered non-software services, the Company allocates revenue to all deliverables based on their relative selling prices. In such circumstances, the Company uses a hierarchy to determine the selling price to be used for allocating revenue to deliverables: (i) vendor-specific objective evidence of fair value ("VSOE"), (ii) third-party evidence of selling price ("TPE") and
(iii) best estimate of selling price ("ESP"). VSOE generally exists only when the Company sells the deliverable separately and is the price actually charged by the Company for that deliverable. ESPs reflect the Company's best estimates of what the selling prices of elements would be if they were sold regularly on a stand-alone basis.

For sales of qualifying versions of iOS devices, Mac and Apple TV, the Company has indicated it may from time to time provide future unspecified software upgrades and features free of charge to customers. The Company also provides various non-software services to owners of qualifying versions of iOS devices and Mac. Because the Company has neither VSOE nor TPE for the unspecified software upgrade rights or the non-software services, revenue is allocated to these rights and services based on the Company's ESPs. Revenue allocated to the unspecified software upgrade rights and non-software services based on the Company's ESPs is deferred and recognized on a straight-line basis over the estimated period the software upgrades and non-software services are expected to be provided for each of these devices, which ranges from two to four years.

The Company's process for determining ESPs involves management's judgment and considers multiple factors that may vary over time depending upon the unique facts and circumstances related to each deliverable. If the facts and circumstances underlying the factors considered change, including the estimated or actual costs incurred to provide non-software services or the estimated period the software upgrades and non-software services are expected to be provided, or should future facts and circumstances lead the Company to consider additional factors, the Company's ESPs and the future rate of related amortization for software upgrades and non-software services related to future sales of these devices could change.

The Company records reductions to revenue for estimated commitments related to price protection and other customer incentive programs. For transactions involving price protection, the Company recognizes revenue net of the estimated amount to be refunded, provided the refund amount can be reasonably and reliably estimated and the other conditions for revenue recognition have been met. The Company's policy requires that, if refunds cannot be reliably estimated, revenue is not recognized until reliable estimates can be made or the price protection lapses. For the Company's other customer incentive programs, the estimated cost is recognized at the later of the date at which the Company has sold the product or the date at which the program is offered. The Company also records reductions to revenue for expected future product returns based on the Company's historical experience. Future market conditions and product transitions may require the Company to increase customer incentive programs that could result in reductions to future revenue. Additionally, certain customer incentive programs require management to estimate the number of customers who will actually redeem the incentive. Management's estimates are based on historical experience and the specific terms and conditions of particular incentive programs. If a greater than estimated proportion of customers redeems such incentives, the Company would be required to record additional reductions to revenue, which would have an adverse impact on the Company's results of operations.

Valuation and Impairment of Marketable Securities

The Company's investments in available-for-sale securities are reported at fair value. Unrealized gains and losses related to changes in the fair value of securities are recognized in accumulated other comprehensive income, net

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of tax, in the Company's Consolidated Balance Sheets. Changes in the fair value of available-for-sale securities impact the Company's net income only when such securities are sold or an other-than-temporary impairment is recognized. Realized gains and losses on the sale of securities are determined by specific identification of each security's cost basis. The Company regularly reviews its investment portfolio to determine if any security is other-than-temporarily impaired, which would require the Company to record an impairment charge in the period any such determination is made. In making this judgment, the Company evaluates, among other things, the duration and extent to which the fair value of a security is less than its cost; the financial condition of the issuer and any changes thereto; and the Company's intent to sell, or whether it will more likely than not be required to sell, the security before recovery of the its amortized cost basis. The Company's assessment on whether a security is other-than-temporarily impaired could change in the future due to new developments or changes in assumptions related to any particular security.

Inventory Valuation and Inventory Purchase Commitments

The Company must order components for its products and build inventory in advance of product shipments. The Company records a write-down for inventories of components and products, including third-party products held for resale, which have become obsolete or are in excess of anticipated demand or net realizable value. The Company performs a detailed review of inventory each fiscal quarter that considers multiple factors including demand forecasts, product life cycle status, product development plans, current sales levels, and component cost trends. The industries in which the Company competes are subject to a rapid and unpredictable pace of product and component obsolescence and demand changes. If future demand or market conditions for the Company's products are less favorable than forecasted or if unforeseen technological changes negatively impact the utility of component inventory, the Company may be required to record additional write-downs, which would adversely affect its results of operations in the period when the write-downs were recorded.

The Company records accruals for estimated cancellation fees related to component orders that have been cancelled or are expected to be cancelled. Consistent with industry practice, the Company acquires components through a combination of purchase orders, supplier contracts, and open orders based on projected demand information. These commitments typically cover the Company's requirements for periods up to 150 days. If there is an abrupt and substantial decline in demand for one or more of the Company's products or an unanticipated change in technological requirements for any of the Company's products, the Company may be required to record additional accruals for cancellation fees that would adversely affect its results of operations in the period when the cancellation fees are identified and recorded.

Warranty Costs

The Company provides for the estimated cost of hardware and software warranties at the time the related revenue is recognized based on historical and projected warranty claim rates, historical and projected cost-per-claim, and knowledge of specific product failures that are outside of the Company's typical experience. Each quarter, the Company reevaluates its estimates to assess the adequacy of its recorded warranty liabilities considering the size of the installed base of products subject to warranty protection and adjusts the amounts as necessary. If actual product failure rates or repair costs differ from estimates, revisions to the estimated warranty liabilities would be required and could materially affect the Company's results of operations.

Income Taxes

The Company records a tax provision for the anticipated tax consequences of the reported results of operations. The provision for income taxes is computed using the asset and liability method, under which deferred tax assets and liabilities are recognized for the expected future tax consequences of temporary differences between the financial reporting and tax bases of assets and liabilities, and for operating losses and tax credit carryforwards. Deferred tax assets and liabilities are measured using the currently enacted tax rates that apply to taxable income in effect for the years in which those tax assets are expected to be realized or settled. The Company records a

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valuation allowance to reduce deferred tax assets to the amount that is believed more likely than not to be realized.

The Company recognizes tax benefits from uncertain tax positions only if it is more likely than not that the tax position will be sustained on examination by the taxing authorities, based on the technical merits of the position. The tax benefits recognized in the financial statements from such positions are then measured based on the largest benefit that has a greater than 50% likelihood of being realized upon ultimate settlement.

Management believes it is more likely than not that forecasted income, including income that may be generated as a result of certain tax planning strategies, together with future reversals of existing taxable temporary differences, will be sufficient to fully recover the deferred tax assets. In the event that the Company determines all or part of the net deferred tax assets are not realizable in the future, the Company will make an adjustment to the valuation allowance that would be charged to earnings in the period such determination is made. In addition, the calculation of tax liabilities involves significant judgment in estimating the impact of uncertainties in the application of GAAP and complex tax laws. Resolution of these uncertainties in a manner inconsistent with management's expectations could have a material impact on the Company's financial condition and operating results.

Legal and Other Contingencies

As discussed in Part I, Item 3 of this Form 10-K under the heading "Legal Proceedings" and in Part II, Item 8 of this Form 10-K in the Notes to Consolidated Financial Statements in Note 7, "Commitments and Contingencies," the Company is subject to various legal proceedings and claims, including those that arise in the ordinary course of business. The Company records a liability when it is probable that a loss has been incurred and the amount is reasonably estimable. There is significant judgment required in both the probability determination and as to whether an exposure can be reasonably estimated. In the opinion of management, there was not at least a reasonable possibility the Company may have incurred a material loss, or a material loss in excess of a recorded accrual, with respect to loss contingencies for legal and other contingencies. However, the outcome of legal proceedings and claims brought against the Company is subject to significant uncertainty. Therefore, although management considers the likelihood of such an outcome to be remote, if one or more of these legal matters were resolved against the Company in a reporting period for amounts in excess of management's expectations, the Company's consolidated financial statements for that reporting period could be materially adversely affected.

Fiscal Period

The Company's fiscal year is the 52 or 53-week period that ends on the last Saturday of September. The Company's fiscal years 2012, 2011 and 2010 ended on September 29, 2012, September 24, 2011, and September 25, 2010, respectively. Fiscal year 2012 spanned 53 weeks, with a 14th week included in the first quarter of 2012, as is done approximately every six years to realign the Company's fiscal quarters more closely to calendar quarters. Inclusion of the additional week in 2012 increased the Company's overall net sales and operating expenses for the year. Fiscal years 2011 and 2010 spanned 52 weeks each. Unless otherwise stated, references to particular years or quarters refer to the Company's fiscal years ended in September and the associated quarters of those fiscal years.

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Net Sales

The following table shows net sales by operating segment and net sales and unit
sales by product during 2012, 2011, and 2010 (dollars in millions and units in

                                            2012         Change           2011         Change           2010
Net Sales by Operating Segment:
Americas net sales                        $  57,512           50 %      $  38,315           56 %      $ 24,498
Europe net sales                             36,323           31 %         27,778           49 %        18,692
Japan net sales                              10,571           94 %          5,437           37 %         3,981
Asia-Pacific net sales                       33,274           47 %         22,592          174 %         8,256
Retail net sales                             18,828           33 %         14,127           44 %         9,798

Total net sales                           $ 156,508           45 %      $ 108,249           66 %      $ 65,225

Net Sales by Product:
Desktops (a)(i)                           $   6,040           (6 )%     $   6,439            4 %      $  6,201
Portables (b)(i)                             17,181           12 %         15,344           36 %        11,278

Total Mac net sales                          23,221            7 %         21,783           25 %        17,479

iPod (c)(i)                                   5,615          (25 )%         7,453          (10 )%        8,274
Other music related products and
services (d)                                  8,534           35 %          6,314           28 %         4,948
iPhone and related products and
services (e)(i)                              80,477           71 %         47,057           87 %        25,179
iPad and related products and services
(f)(i)                                       32,424           59 %         20,358          311 %         4,958
Peripherals and other hardware (g)            2,778           19 %          2,330           28 %         1,814
Software, service and other sales (h)         3,459           17 %          2,954           15 %         2,573

Total net sales                           $ 156,508           45 %      $ 108,249           66 %      $ 65,225

Unit Sales by Product:
Desktops (a)                                  4,656            0 %          4,669            1 %         4,627
Portables (b)                                13,502           12 %         12,066           34 %         9,035

Total Mac unit sales                         18,158            9 %         16,735           22 %        13,662

iPod unit sales                              35,165          (17 )%        42,620          (15 )%       50,312

iPhone units sold                           125,046           73 %         72,293           81 %        39,989

iPad units sold                              58,310           80 %         32,394          334 %         7,458

(a) Includes revenue from iMac, Mac mini and Mac Pro sales.

(b) Includes revenue from MacBook, MacBook Air and MacBook Pro sales.

(c) Includes revenue from iPod sales.

(d) Includes revenue from sales from the iTunes Store, App Store, and iBookstore in addition to sales of iPod services and Apple-branded and third-party iPod accessories.

(e) Includes revenue from sales of iPhone, iPhone services, and Apple-branded and third-party iPhone accessories.

(f) Includes revenue from sales of iPad, iPad services, and Apple-branded and third-party iPad accessories.

(g) Includes revenue from sales of displays, networking products, and other hardware.

(h) Includes revenue from sales of Apple-branded and third-party Mac software, and services.

(i) Includes amortization of related revenue deferred for non-software services and embedded software upgrade rights.

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Fiscal Year 2012 versus 2011

Net sales during 2012 increased $48.3 billion or 45% compared to 2011. Several factors contributed positively to this increase, including the addition of a 14th week in the first quarter of 2012, as well as the following:

Net sales of iPhone and related products and services were $80.5 billion in 2012, representing an increase of $33.4 billion or 71% compared to 2011. iPhone unit sales totaled 125.0 million during 2012, representing an increase of 52.8 million units or 73% compared to 2011. The year-over-year growth in iPhone net sales and unit sales during 2012 reflects strong demand for iPhone in all of the Company's operating segments, which is primarily a result of the launches of iPhone 4S in the first quarter of 2012 and iPhone 5 in the fourth quarter of 2012, ongoing demand for iPhone 4 and iPhone 3GS, and expanded distribution with new carriers and resellers. Net sales of iPhone and related products and services were 51% and 43% of the Company's total net sales for 2012 and 2011, respectively.

Net sales of iPad and related products and services were $32.4 billion in . . .

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