Apple has invested $1.42 billion in the March quarter alone in research and development, signaling an incredible effort to elaborate future products. The company is also projecting a further increase in R&D costs for the next quarter (via AppleInsider).
To date, Apple has spent more on R&D ($2.75 billion) than it did in the five years before releasing the iPhone ($2.68 billion). The $1.42 billion spent between January and March on R&D means a $303 million jump in expenses compared to the same period a year prior. In terms of percentage, R&D spending accounted for 3.1% of sales.
And the next quarter won’t bring R&D spending cuts, according to corporate Comptroller Luca Maestri. During Apple’s quarterly earnings call, he said that he expects the company’s operating expenses to be between $4.4 billion and $4.5 billion — R&D included — up from $4.35 billion for the quarter that ended on March 31.
Even Apple CEO Tim Cook has mentioned R&D when reasoning why the company needs to have a great amount of cash available at any given time.
And let’s face it: The amount of money spent on R&D is well worth it. Apple’s R&D spending generated six times more net income than its competitors Samsung, Microsoft, and Google. And that’s impressive even if we are talking about data for the fiscal year 2012.