As Steve Jobs liked to say, “Boom.”
Total unit sales of Apple products surpassed unit sales of computers running Windows last quarter, according to Andreesen Horowitz analyst Benedict Evans. Using numbers from Apple, Gartner and Andreesen Horowitz, Evans said the two companies were close to parity on device sales when counting Windows Phone units, though Apple has surpassed devices that run traditional Windows.
It’s a historic moment for Apple, which in the first quarter of 2009 didn’t come close to competing with Microsoft’s sales. But between the deflating PC market and an explosion in sales of the iPhone and iPad, Apple managed to hit the gas and pass Microsoft.
Device sales aren’t the whole story for either company, of course. Microsoft has many more products that it works on, like the Xbox One and Bing, and Apple brings in billions of dollars through the App Store. When it comes to their financials, there’s no contest: Apple reported $57.6 billion in revenue last quarter, more than two times Microsoft’s quarterly revenue of $24.52 billion.
It’s unclear whether the sea change is permanent, though. As the chart above shows, Apple’s sales traditionally run high in the fourth quarter of a calendar year when people are looking to pick up new iOS devices for the holidays, but slip after that.
Still, it looks like Apple’s growth, while modest, isn’t going away just yet. It has a big lead over Microsoft in the mobile and tablet markets, areas where new Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella and company need to step up their game.