Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) earnings could top $13.62 per share for December quarter,  partially due to iPhone 5 sales, according to Barclays PLC (NYSE:BCS) (LON:BARC)’s recent research report.

Apple iPhone 5S

Barclays PLC (NYSE:BCS) (LON:BARC) analysts feel given upside to gross margins in iPhones, Apple’s EPS guidance for December quarter would be in line with Barclays’ estimates.

Ben A. Reitzes and team at Barclays in their October earnings guidance for U.S. IT Hardware & Data Networking industry expect a conservative outlook from Apple given product transactions.

iPhone 5C: Barclays retains its earlier price target on AAPL

Barclays ireiterated its Overweight rating on Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL), besides retaining its price target at $540.

Barclays’ analysts have projected an EPS of $7.80 for Apple’s September quarter, as against consensus estimates of $7.88 per share, while revenue for the fourth quarter of 2013 has been pegged at $36,523 million as against consensus estimates of $36,756 million.

However, for the December quarter, Barclays has projected an EPS of $13.62 per share as against consensus estimates of $13.79 per share, while revenue for the first quarter of 2014 has been pegged at $54,360 million as against consensus estimates of $55,399 million.

Apple iPhone 5C has potential to deliver better top and bottomline

Ben A. Reitzes and the team at Barclays in their October earnings guidance for U.S. IT Hardware & Data Networking industry said Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) stands out in its potential to deliver top and bottom line upside into CY-end, in a sector beset by potential problems in enterprise hardware.

The analysts point out Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) can be expected to announce its iPad and Mac launch event on October 22nd, ahead of its September results on October 28th, which is expected to reveal more details about the upcoming holiday season.

Barclays’ analysts believe investors should listen closely to what Apple says about channel inventory levels, which could seem elevated for some models due to the launch of 10 brand new SKU’s with iPhone 5C.

Barclays’ analysts feel, though Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) could surprise on the EPS front while providing guidance for December quarter, Apple is still likely to be conservative with its revenue guidance, by pegging its revenue guidance for the lower range of $52 to $54 billion, given product transitions.

However, Barclays PLC (NYSE:BCS) (LON:BARC)’ analysts feel December quarter iPhone unit estimates could be in the 54.7 million range, that includes about 10 million iPhone 4S models, 10 to 15 million iPhone 5Cs and over 30 million iPhone 5S models.

Recently, Chinese website Ctechcn claimed Apple Inc has slashed production of its iPhone 5C due to limited demands, by halving its per day production to 150,000.

On iPads, Barclays analysts’ estimates September would be weak in all models, thanks to increased competition and weak seasonality of a new potential product.

Barclays’ analysts feel some of the key topics to be addressed by Apple management during the upcoming conference call include Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL)’s execution around the launch of iPhone 5S and iPhone 5C besides a possible deal with China Mobile Ltd. (NYSE:CHL) in the near future. Apple management may also address on topics such as channel inventory levels for major products, long-term gross margin besides margin trends within the iPhone and iPad.