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Apple sold 50.8 million iPhones last quarter — below expectations

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Apple just released its second-quarter earnings. Big picture: Apple’s overall revenue and iPhone sales modestly missed Wall Street’s expectations, and guidance for the current third quarter was lower than expected.

But it’s not that big a deal — investors are more interested in its forthcoming iPhone launch, a big one that’s expected later this year. Shares are only down about 2 percent in after-hours trading.

Apple reported $52.9 billion in second-quarter revenue, up about 5 percent year over year — accelerating growth! — and slightly lower than the $53 billion that Wall Street expected.

The company shipped 50.8 million iPhones last quarter, lower than the expected 52 million. (On the earnings call, Apple CEO Tim Cook says it was “in line” with internal expectations, and noted that Apple reduced channel inventory during the quarter.)

Guidance for the current third quarter is lower than anticipated, too: Apple says to expect sales between $43.5 billion and $45.5 billion, but Wall Street was hoping to hear a forecast roughly between $45 billion and $46 billion.

Once again, Apple CEO Tim Cook touted the company’s services business — this time in the second paragraph of its earnings press release. (“...We’re thrilled with the strong momentum of our Services business, with our highest revenue ever for a 13-week quarter.”) Services revenue grew about $1 billion versus the year-ago quarter, the best of Apple’s product segments.

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