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Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

Apple reported quarterly sales and earnings that were far better than what analysts were expecting. But these numbers could’ve been even better if the company had access to more chips.

Why it matters: Over the past year, automakers have been the focus of the global chip shortage as these supply constraints have led to explosive prices in used cars.

  • But the chip shortage has also been having a material impact on other industries.

What they’re saying: After the company’s quarterly results were released on Tuesday, Apple CFO Luca Maestri told CNBC how the chip shortage held back sales.

  • "The shortage primarily affected Mac and iPad," Cook said. "We had predicted the shortages to total $3 to $4 billion. But we were actually able to mitigate some of that."
  • Cook noted that the company's shortfall came in at the lower end of that initially predicted range.

Threat level: "We expect supply constraints during the September quarter to be greater than what we experienced during the June quarter," Apple CFO Luca Maestri said on a call with analysts.

  • "The constraints will primarily impact iPhone and iPad."

The bottom line: Shortages will continue to be a problem for businesses aiming to maximize sales and profits. But on the bright side, it also reflects potential business activity that has yet to be realized.

Editor's note: This post has been corrected to show it was Apple CFO Luca Maestri who spoke on the call with analysts (not Apple CEO Tim Cook).

Go deeper

Ina Fried, author of Login
Sep 15, 2021 - Technology

Apple banks on subsidies

Apple CEO Tim Cook, introducing the iPhone 13 on Tuesday. Photo: Apple

With the iPhone 13 lineup providing only modest updates to Apple's flagship smartphone, the company may be even more reliant on promotions from wireless carriers to keep the sales momentum going.

Why it matters: Apple counts on the iPhone for a huge chunk of its own sales, while such sales are also critical to the rest of the mobile industry, including network providers and component suppliers.

Ina Fried, author of Login
Sep 13, 2021 - Technology

Epic may not benefit from Apple's App Store changes

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

"Fortnite" creator Epic Games' Apple lawsuit failed to level the walls of the App Store, though it did leave some cracks in Apple's fortress.

Yes, but: The modest changes Apple now has to make are more likely to benefit other iOS developers than to help Epic itself, unless the game-maker backs down from an all-or-nothing approach.

Miriam Kramer, author of Space
22 mins ago - Science

All-civilian Inspiration4 is back on Earth after flight to space

A side-by-side of the Inspiration4 crew and a shot of their capsule on the way back to Earth. Photo: SpaceX

The all-civilian Inspiration4 crew is back on Earth after their three-day mission in orbit.

The big picture: The launch and landing of this fully amateur, private space crew marks a changing of the guard from spaceflight being a largely government-led venture to being under the purview of private companies.