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Apple blows away analysts' expectations as iPhone sales boom

Apple reported a profit of $US10.22 billion for the second quarter ended March 29, up 7% from $US9.55 billion in the year-earlier period, well ahead of what Wall Street was picking.

Revenue for the quarter rose 5% against the year-ago period to $US43.6 billion. 

iPhones up
The company said it sold 43.7 million iPhones in the second quarter, far surpassing analysts' expectation of 38.2 million units, and up on the year-ago quarter's 37.4 million.

iPads down
Sales of iPads sagged to 16.35 million against the year-ago quarter's 19.5 million.

Some analysts blamed the slowdown on Samsung, Amazon and others releasing cheaper Android-based tablets.

Apple CEO Tim Cook blamed the dip on Apple reducing inventory.

Mac sales were flat at 4.11 million.

Inceased buyback
Apple, which is holding $US151 billion in cash (down from the year-ago $US159 billion) expanded its stock buyback program to $US90 billion from $US60 billion because Mr Cook says its shares as undervalued.

The company also announced a 7 for 1 stock split and increased its quarterly dividend by 8%.

Apple now plans to return $US130 billion to shareholders by the end of 2015, up from its previous target of $US100 billion.

Shares [NAS:AAPL]  rose 6.5% in after-hours trading.