Apple takes a bigger slice of the pie…

By OnDownLow 

Apple, the brand the geeks all know (and a select few love), has posted a 36 percent gain in quarterly profits after strong global sales of its Macintosh computers and solid iPod sales, but remains cautious for the rest of 2008.

The company surpassed analysts expectations and made a net profit of $1.05 billion in the first quarter of 2008, compared with $770 million in the same period a year earlier.

Apple also shipped 1.5 million Mac computers during the quarter, representing 36 per cent annual growth. The company also sold 10.6 million iPods during the quarter, a 1 per cent rise, and shipped 1.7 million iPhones.

However, considered as part of a luxury consumer goods business, Apple is expected to be vulnerable to any economic downturn in the US, leading it to set relatively low revenue expectations of $7.2 billion (£3.6bn) for the next quarter, with gross margins tipped to be down around 35 per cent year-on-year.