One continuing theme through the course of the call was the economy's overall effect on Apple's numbers. One noticeable effect was that professional and education sales were down during the March quarter. Even with the release of an entirely refreshed line of Mac desktops, the quarter saw an overall decrease in Mac marketshare. It wasn't all bad for Apple, however, as iPod sales (particularly the iPod Touch) were up enough to seemingly offset the bulk of the lagging Mac sales.
While the results themselves are always nice to hear, the most interesting section of the quarterly call is the question and answer section that follows. The answers, while somewhat scripted, give the listeners a chance to hear Apple execs think and speak on their feet regarding Apple's results and plans for the future.
One of the more notable topics during this discussion was Apple's opinion on the netbook market. Tim Cook took the question and in an answer that was truly Apple said, that netbooks are "junky ... not a consumer experience that we would put the Mac brand on," while quickly following-up with a good, old-fashioned "If we can find a way to deliver an innovative product ... then we'll do that." If you remember the days before the video iPod, then this conversation should be very familiar to you. For a good overview of the Q&A check out MacRumors' excellent post on the subject.
If you don't care about the financial results and have grown tired of hearing Apple dance around whether they're going to release a netbook, then there is at least one bright spot in all of this. According Peter Oppenheimer, Apple is pleasantly awaiting the joyous return of Steve Jobs in June (we miss you Steve). I don't think anyone was really expecting any more or less information than that, but here's to hoping Stevie J. returns and brings with him all-new iPhones, netbooks, and pots of gold.
Overall, the results were very positive for a company that deals in "luxury" products given the current economic climate. I hope that in the future Apple continues to succeed and that this is the last quarter we hear of in which Apple loses marketshare to anyone.
[Via Engadget, MacRumors, and MacJournals]