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ATPM 16.08
August 2010



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by Robert Paul Leitao,

Welcome to the August issue of About This Particular Macintosh! We begin this issue with a look back at Apple’s June quarter results, and we bring things forward with a mention of the newest Macs in release. Join us this month, and every month, as we celebrate the personal computing experience and continue our chronicle of today’s digital lifestyle with Apple product users in mind.

Record Revenue, Near-Record Earnings

For the three-month period ended June 26, 2010, Apple reported revenue of $15.7 billion and earnings per share of $3.51. These results represent record quarterly revenue for the company and near-record earnings per share, eclipsed only by the $3.67 per share earned in the December quarter. For the quarter, revenue rose 61% over the prior-year period, and earnings per share increased by about 75%.

The fiscal quarter’s record revenue was achieved through the sale of 3.472 million Macintosh computers, 8.398 million iPhone, and 3.27 million iPads. The iPad, in its first quarter of release, generated $2.166 billion in device and accessories sales. For the fiscal year ending in September, Apple is on track to report record revenue of close to $65 billion and earnings of near $15 per share. At $65 billion in annual revenue, Apple’s revenue take is greater than the GDP (gross domestic product) of most nations.

It’s interesting to note: in the June quarter, close to 50% of Apple’s revenue was generated by products that did not exist in the marketplace just over three years ago.

High Profits, Low Share Price

In spite of Apple’s 75% increase in earnings per share in the June quarter, at $257.25, the closing price on the last trading day of July, Apple’s shares ended the month’s trading at less than 20 times trailing 12-month earnings. In the three-month period ending in September, Apple may surpass Microsoft in both revenue and earnings. We won’t speculate on the factors impacting the company’s current valuation, but there may be upside potential in the stock as market conditions eventually improve and investors return to equities.

Magic Trackpad

In July, Apple released a new accessory for the Mac called the Magic Trackpad. It adds the popular Multi-Touch functionality found on the MacBook Pro line of laptops to the Mac desktop. For $69, this Bluetooth accessory, operating on AA batteries, adds roughly a five-inch square surface for pinching, swiping, and scrolling gestures. Accompanying the new Magic Trackpad, Apple offers for $29 an Apple battery charger kit, complete with six rechargeable batteries for use in the Magic Trackpad and other battery-powered wireless accessories such as the Apple Magic Mouse or the more conventionally named Apple Wireless keyboard.

Combined, the Magic Trackpad and the Apple battery charger kit cost $98. It’s accessories such as these that add nicely to Apple’s robust revenue growth and impressive earnings results. It isn’t magic that’s producing record revenue for Apple but smart marketing, an expanding retail store presence, and attractive hardware devices with nicely designed accessories to match.

The New iMac

Just before press time, Apple announced a refresh to its iMac all-in-one personal computer. Available with i3, i5, and i7 Intel Core processors, the new iMacs also sport updated graphics processor options, making the iMac a satisfactory choice for professional content creators and amateur gamers alike.

The New Mac Pro

It’s been quite awhile since Apple updated its Mac Pro line of workstations. But new Mac Pros featuring up to 12 cores of processing power (via two six-core Intel Westmere processors) will be available later this month. The hefty specs and lofty performance makes the Mac Pro a solution for the most demanding professionals. It’s also a margin expander that will only enhance Apple’s quarterly results.

Dollar for dollar, the iMac is one of the best personal computer values on the market today. The Mac Pro has moved beyond the realm of a personal computer, and in the 12-core configuration offers computing power in a mini-tower enclosure that would have been almost unimaginable just a few years ago.

Mac OS X Today

The new Mac Pros demonstrate the scalability of Mac OS X. From the iOS that runs popular handheld devices such as the iPad and iPhone to the workstation-class Mac Pro, Mac OS X was intended from the beginning to be a versatile and adaptable operating system. Although Apple’s latest digital devices have overshadowed the quiet work being done on the next Mac OS X update, we’ll be hearing more from Apple in the coming months about the next version of the operating system that sits at the center of over 100 million devices in use worldwide.

The August Issue of ATPM

Each month our editors scour the world of Apple computing to bring you interesting views, insightful reviews, and a unique look at today’s Apple-related news. As we head into the second half of the season of summer, please share a copy of the August issue of ATPM with family and friends. This month’s issue is an excellent barbecue-time companion.

Our August issue includes:

MacMuser: Laissez-Faire Wee-Fee

Mark Tennent finds the lack of restriction to Wi-Fi in France to be quite refreshing.

MacMuser: …001 a Space Odd…

A classic story of why we Mac users are Mac users instead of Windows users.

Next Actions: E-mail Tricks and Tools

Ed Eubanks Jr. updates his GTD Master List and returns to the question of processing e-mail.

Segments: Size Really Matters

Linus Ly shares his tale of migration to and from a 10 GB iPod, an iPod touch, and the iPad.

How To: Things I Wish Someone Had Told Me About Networking

Sylvester Roque reminisces about networking antics in the mid-90s and describes the core basics for accomplishing the same setup today.

Desktop Pictures: Tremiti Islands

Giuseppe and Cecilia Balacco and their daughter Maria Luisa offer this month’s desktop photos taken around Italy’s Tremiti islands.

Out at Five

Matt Johnson’s new series, Out at Five, looks at the workplace and its boundaries from all angles, revolving around many of the same characters from his former series, Cortland.

Review: OWC Express

The OWC Express is a great hard drive enclosure for Mac notebook users.

Review: Wiretap Anywhere 1.0.8

Our look at WireTap Anywhere, Ambrosia Software’s slick utility that converts any Mac software or hardware into an audio source for mixing, recording, and playback.

Also in This Series

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