Apple today announced its earnings for its third fiscal quarter of 2012. Apple’s revenue amounted to $35B in Q3. With earnings of $9.32 per share. The company’s net profit in Q3 was $8.8B. These numbers ‘missed’ industry estimates slightly but beat Apple’s own estimates.

Note that Apple’s estimates are typically low, but it still did edge itself out by a bit over a billion in profit. The industry estimates by both independents and professionals are what cause people to say this is a ‘miss’, but those estimates are rarely correct anyhow.

Apple sold 26M iPhones, up 28% year over year, and 17M iPads this quarter, up 84% year over year. Apple sold 4M Macs during the quarter, bringing sales up 2% when compared to the same quarter a year ago. iPod sales were at 6.8M down 10%.

“We’re thrilled with record sales of 17 million iPads in the June quarter,” said Tim Cook, Apple’s CEO. “We’ve also just updated the entire MacBook line, will release Mountain Lion tomorrow and will be launching iOS 6 this Fall. We are also really looking forward to the amazing new products we’ve got in the pipeline.”

“We’re continuing to invest in the growth of our business and are pleased to be declaring a dividend of $2.65 per share today,” said Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s CFO. “Looking ahead to the fourth fiscal quarter, we expect revenue of about $34 billion and diluted earnings per share of about $7.65.”

Dare to compare

Fortune estimates of Apple’s Q3 had placed overall revenue estimates from analysts at around $37.21B in revenue, with earnings of $10.33 EPS. Estimates had placed iPhone sales at around 28.97M and iPad sales at around 15.69M.

In the first fiscal quarter of 2012, Apple’s revenue amounted to $46.33B, with earnings of $13.87 per share. The company’s net profit in Q1 was $13.06B. In the Q2 2012 earnings report, issued in April, Apple reported $39.2B revenue, $13.06BB profit, $12.30 EPS, 35.1M iPhones, 11.8M iPads, 4.89M Macs.

Apple’s own estimates for Q3 were easily beat. “Our record March quarter results drove $14 billion in cash flow from operations,” said Peter Oppenheimer, Apple’s CFO, back in April. “Looking ahead to the third fiscal quarter, we expect revenue of about $34 billion and diluted earnings per share of about $8.68.”

Apple will be streaming its earnings call live at 2pm, we will bring you important news and analysis from the call shortly thereafter.

The stash

Apple now has a cash hoard, including cash, short term and long term investments, of some $117.2 billion.