Apple released its fourth quarter financial results today after the markets closed. In a conference call that was also webcast, Apple’s CFO Peter Oppenheimer and CEO Steve Jobs discussed Apple’s sales and earnings figures, as well as shed some light on future directions for the company.

A few notes from the conference call:

  • iPad will be coming to Verizon
  • Numerous Fortune 500 companies are adding iPhone and iPad to their approved device lists
  • Hoping to open 40 to 50 stores in 2011, with 50% international
  • Steve Jobs cast a dim light on RIM, claiming a tough road ahead for the BlackBerry maker
  • Jobs took a few jabs at Google for their claims of openness, pointing to the proprietary interfaces of Android on selected handsets from each handset maker, and a huge fragmentation in devices and OS versions. “Open systems don’t always win.” Rather than closed vs. open, Jobs characterized the real argument as integrated vs. fragmented, and what’s best for the user.
  • Jobs on the incoming tablets: 7 inch screens are too small as compared with the iPad, and the 10 inch size is the minimum to create great tablet apps. Google is telling tablet manufacturers not to use the current Froyo version of Android, but to wait until the tablet version of Android is released, sometime next year.
  • Jobs on the effect of the iPad: the iPad will affect the notebook, and Apple has seen tremendous interest from business even though they haven’t pushed the iPad much to business. “The more time that passes, the more I am convinced that we have a tiger by the tail. This is a new model of computing.”

In a press release ahead of the conference call, Steve Jobs said:

We are blown away to report over $20 billion in revenue and over $4 billion in after-tax earnings—both all-time records for Apple. iPhone sales of 14.1 million were up 91 percent year-over-year, handily beating the 12.1 million phones RIM sold in their most recent quarter. We still have a few surprises left for the remainder of this calendar year.

Some of the numbers:

  • 14.1 million iPhones sold this quarter, 40 million this year
  • 4.19 million iPads sold this quarter
  • 3.89 million Macs sold this quarter (a 27% increase over a year ago quarter)
  • Gross Profit Margin was 36.9 percent
  • $5.7 billion in cash flow, $51 billion in cash on hand
  • $20 billion in revenue for Q4
  • $4.31 billion net quarterly profit

Apple’s report exceeded analysts’ expectations of $18.86 billion in revenue for the quarter. Apple’s stock, which closed at $318, fell in after market trading.

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