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Apple hit record $18 billion profit on ‘staggering’ iPhone sales

US-based tech giant, Apple’s quarterly results shattered expectations – with record sales of its new big-screen iPhones during the holiday shopping season as well as a 70 percent rise in China sales powering the company to the largest profit in corporate history.

The company sold 74.5 million iPhones in its fiscal first quarter that ended December 27, while many analysts had expected fewer than 70 million. Revenue rose to $74.6 billion from $57.6 billion a year earlier. Apple’s cash pile is now $178 billion (), enough to buy IBM, or the equivalent of $556 () for every American.

The company’s success in the competitive Chinese market can be attributed to its partnership with China Mobile Ltd, the largest global mobile carrier, and the appeal of the larger screen size of the iPhone 6 and 6 Plus.

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