The recession has been tough on most publicly-traded tech companies. Even Google, which has held up quite well, has admitted that the recession has made an impact on its business.
So is there any major tech company that hasn't really been affected? After reading its Q2 results yesterday, you might be inclined to answer 'yes'; Apple appears about as close to unaffected as a company can be.
In Q2, Apple sold 3.8m iPhones, 11m iPods and 2.22m Macs. While Mac sales are down 3% year-over-year, Apple did beat expectations and the iPhone and iPod sales beat expectations handily. The iPod figure sets a March quarter record and year-over-year, iPhone sales have grown a whopping 123%.
All told, Apple raked in $8.16bn in revenues in the quarter and generated a net profit of $1.21bn. Analysts had expected $7.96bn in revenues and lower margins than Apple delivered. It was Apple's best non-holiday quarter according to Apple CFO Peter Oppenheimer. Shares of Apple were up nearly 3% in after-hours trading on the news.
Now that we know Apple is holding up quite well, the question is: what does the future have in store for the company?
The company gave a conservative guidance for Q3 that was lower than analyst estimates, but that was due in part to a decision to delay the recognition of revenue from iPhone sales after March 17.
If Apple has held up so well through the pain the recession has wrought so far, it's easy to believe that the company, which has $29bn in cash reserves, isn't likely to see a major drop-off in consumer demand for its products going forward.
When I look at netbooks, I see cracked keyboards, terrible software, junky hardware, very small screens. It’s just not a good consumer experience and not something we would put the Mac brand on. It’s a segment we would not choose to play in.
He believes iPhones and iPod Touches are viable alternatives to netbooks.
That seems like a stretch to me at least and with netbooks gaining so much traction in the marketplace, I can't help but think that Apple is missing the boat on this one. Even if it is, however, Apple has always done its own thing and when you look at its Q2 results, it's hard for anyone to argue with the road the company is taken.
Photo credit: The Pug Father via Flickr.