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Analysts hold back on Apple earnings in expectation of iPhone 5

Apple earningsAnalysts aren’t going big on their expectations for Apple’s earnings this quarter.

Apple reports its third quarter 2012 earnings Tuesday, but according to Reuters, analysts are playing it safe in anticipation of the rumored iPhone 5. Apple often releases its iPhones in October, which causes a slow-down in the market as people stop putting down cash for a model they expect to be outdated soon. We haven’t heard anything concrete about the iPhone 5 yet (though we’ve heard a ton of rumors), but we do know that the operating system it will likely run, iOS 6, is slated for a fall launch.

“Of all the quarters, this is the one that seems to have widest range of opinion,” said Tim Lesko, portfolio manager at Granite Investment Advisors told Reuters.

Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S expects Apple to bring in $37.2 billion in revenue and $10.35 a share. Apple, on the other hand, provided a conservative guidance of $34 billion in revenue and earnings per share of $8.68. The company is also expected to sell only 29 million iPhones.

Apple does have a couple of things going for it this quarter, though, including the 15″ Macbook Pro with Retina screen it launched this June. The computer got an upgrade at Apple’s World Wide Developer Conference with the same display that made the latest iPad so popular. Sales from this probably won’t boost Apple’s bottom line too much, but the company does make a significant portion of its revenue from overall Mac sales. It sold 4 million units in the last quarter.

Despite hesitation from analysts this quarter, Apple beat market expectations in a big way in its last two earnings calls. It blew estimates out of the water with $39.2 billion in revenue last quarter and profits of $11.6 billion. The company sold 35.1 million iPhones, which was 88 percent more than the same quarter in 2011, but 1.9 million units less than Apple’s first quarter.

Check back with VentureBeat Tuesday for full coverage of Apple’s earnings.

via Reuters; Apple with money phone via Shutterstock