Apple is testing iPhones and iPads with larger screens as it seeks to keep intensifying competition at bay, the Wall Street Journal reported.

London - Apple paid less than two percent tax on its overseas profits after slashing the amount foreign taxmen receive.

The iPad and iPhone giant paid $713 million in corporation tax outside the US in the year to September 29, despite its foreign pre-tax earnings surging more than 50 percent to $36.8 billion, papers filed with US regulators revealed.

The technology giant's overseas tax rate fell to 1.9 percent, compared with 2.5 percent the previous year and a headline corporation tax rate in the UK of 24 percent and 35 percent in the US.

Apple channels much of its European business through Ireland, where the corporate tax rate is just 12.5 percent.

The firm is the latest to come under scrutiny for making a poor contribution to overseas coffers after Starbucks, Facebook and Google met similar criticism. - The Independent