Apple's revenue just fell for the first time since 2019

Inside the Apple Store in Knightsbridge, London
(Image credit: Gerald Lynch / Future)

Apple today shared its quarterly results and while the company did note that it has a huge number of devices in use around the world, it wasn't all good news.

Sharing its financial results for the fiscal 2023 first quarter that ended December 21, 2023, Apple said that it posted revenue of $117.2 billion.

It's true that the number is huge, but it isn't quite huge enough. Apple noted that it represents a downturn of 5% for the future year over year, the first time that Apple's revenue has fallen year-on-year since 2019. 

On a more positive note, Apple's installed user base continues to go from strength to strength.

2 billion devices and growing

Apple CEO Tim Cook, via a statement posted to the company's website, said that there are now more than two billion active devices in a global installed base that continues to grow. That number sat at 1.8 billion almost exactly a year ago, meaning an additional 200,000 devices are now in use.

Apple's Services business continues to grow also. Luca Maestri, Apple’s CFO, said that the company set an all-time revenue record of $20.8 billion in Services revenue for the quarter. Services include Apple Music, Apple TV Plus, Apple Arcade, and Apple One among others.

As for the overall fall in revenue, Cook blamed "a challenging environment."

Apple's numbers were certainly not helped by supply chain issues that made its best iPhones almost impossible to buy during the quarter. Issues at Foxconn's iPhone 14 Pro plant meant that stocks were hard to come by.

To that point, Apple says that it raked in $65.78 billion in iPhone sales, a number that's significantly down on the $71.63 billion of the year prior.

Apple's quarterly performance is also thought to have been impacted by the current global economic situation, with rampant inflation among some of the issues people are currently dealing with around the world. 

Apple's share price fell sharply in the wake of the results, however, bounced back in early trading Friday morning. 

Oliver Haslam

Oliver Haslam has written about Apple and the wider technology business for more than a decade with bylines on How-To Geek, PC Mag, iDownloadBlog, and many more. He has also been published in print for Macworld, including cover stories. At iMore, Oliver is involved in daily news coverage and, not being short of opinions, has been known to 'explain' those thoughts in more detail, too.

Having grown up using PCs and spending far too much money on graphics card and flashy RAM, Oliver switched to the Mac with a G5 iMac and hasn't looked back. Since then he's seen the growth of the smartphone world, backed by iPhone, and new product categories come and go. Current expertise includes iOS, macOS, streaming services, and pretty much anything that has a battery or plugs into a wall. Oliver also covers mobile gaming for iMore, with Apple Arcade a particular focus. He's been gaming since the Atari 2600 days and still struggles to comprehend the fact he can play console quality titles on his pocket computer.