This year is turning out to be a big one for Apple. They recently passed Microsoft in net income earnings at $5.99 billion compared to $5.23 billion from Microsoft -- mainly due to iOS devices like the iPad 2 and iPhone 4 driving sales and raising profit margins. The iPhone, iPad and iPod touch currently represent roughly 65% of overall sales for Apple, with the Verizon iPhone helping push demand even further as Android growth seems to be at a plateau.

Apple and Verizon had a very successful launch of the iPhone 4, which allowed the iPhone to expand its market share that was previously held back by its prolonged carrier exclusivity with AT&T [...] some of that growth came at the expense of Android operating system

Apple has now edged out HTC, Motorola and RIM as the third-largest smartphone maker in the US with a 14% share of sales, and they don't appear to be slowing down anytime soon. They just released the white iPhone 4 with reports of lines forming at Apple Stores -- all for a device that's already been on the market for 10 months, just in a different color. And with WWDC 2011 just around the corner for Apple to reveal iOS 5 to the masses, it seems they have nowhere to go but up from here.

But can the iPhone and iPad help sustain Apple's growth given how determined the competition is at beating them in the smartphone and tablet markets? Sound off in the comments below!

[NPD, TechCrunch, Asymco]