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Apple: Record profits, new Macbook, no netbooks

Apple just defied the recession, denied cheap iPhones and decried its copycat competition as it posted epic profits for the Christmas period

Apple just defied the recession, denied cheap iPhones and decried its copycat competition, as it posted record profits for the first quarter of the fiscal year '08-'09 of $1.6bn.

Jobs 'n' friends shifted 2.5 million Macs, a record 22.7 million iPods and 4.4 million iPhones in the final three months of 2008. True, Nokia today announced it shifted 113 million handsets in Q4 2008 (down 15 per cent year-on-year, FYI, while Apple was up 88 per cent over last year). But when you consider Nokia currently offers over 100 different handsets globally and Apple sells just one, 4.4 million sales is an impressive figure.

But Apple's conference call with interim pseudo-CEO Tim Cook wasn't all about figures. Cook also commented on the company's dismissive position regarding the netbook market, slamming netbooks for having "software that's not good, cramped keyboards and small displays. We don't think people are going to be pleased with those types of products," he snooted. So don't expect a cheap Crapintosh netbook any time soon.

And allaying any concerns that Apple was going to sit back with a mojito as companies copy its designs and software, Cook warned that "[Apple doesn't] mind competition, but if others rip off our intellectual property, we will go after them."

With such strong quarterly results, a whopping $28bn in the bank and zero dollars of debt, not only can the company recruit some of the finest hired goons to chase copycats, but it's in a strong position to ride out the recession.

Apple stock is currently up 6 per cent following the call.

In other Apple news, a new version of Quicktime (version 2.6) quietly hit the Intertubes last night, along with a notable-yet-quietly-launched refresh of the specs inside the classic white plastic MacBook.

The white MacBook now has an upgraded Intel Core 2 Duo CPU, double the RAM at 2GB (up from 1GB), and Nvidia 9400M mobile graphics instead of the Intel graphics it used up until this week. It's already on sale in the UK Apple store for the previous price of £719.