Expectations are low for Apple's recently concluded March quarter, in which some market watchers believe the company likely saw its first year-over-year profit decline in a decade, despite booming sales of its iPad lineup.
Rumors of a growing alliance between Apple and Yahoo for delivering information to iPhone users have been met positively by one Wall Street analysts, who sees strong benefits for both parties in the relationship, particularly in combating Google.
Greater China has become an increasingly important part of Apple's business, generating about 15 percent of the company's fiscal 2012 sales, and the nation's role is expected to grow even more with a particularly strong debut for the iPhone 5.
Demand for the iPhone 5 remains strong as supply and yields continue to improve, but total iPad sales for the holiday quarter may prove lower than market watchers expect, as the iPad mini cannibalizes sales of the new fourth-generation iPad.
Though the starting price of the iPad mini is higher than many had expected, Wall Street analysts believe the storage capacity and build quality offered by Apple will be more than enough to court consumers and make the product a success.
Difficulties in manufacturing the iPhone 5 are expected to affect Apple's gross margins for the near term, as the company is predicted to absorb some of the quality control costs associated with producing its latest handset.
While Research in Motion reported dismal quarterly earnings this week, the company did manage to improve its cash balance, suggesting the its demise isn't imminent — if it can survive until the launch of BlackBerry 10.