As Apple prepares to announce its second quarter financial results this evening (UK time), Motorola has released its own positive first quarter results.

Motorola, which builds G4 processors for Macs, managed to stay profitable in the first quarter 2003, despite posting revenue slightly lower than the same quarter last year.

The company reported revenue of $6.04 billion, 2.3 per cent down on the $6.18 billion achieved in the first quarter of 2002. Net profit was $21 million, or $0.01 per share, compared to a loss of $184 million in the year-ago quarter.

Motorola also reported $148 million in after-tax income from special items, primarily related to the sale of some of its Nextel Communications shares. This returned a profit of $169 million including these special items.

Motorola executives said that business conditions remained very uncertain, but expect the company will remain profitable during its current financial year. It expects second quarter revenue to be between $6.4 and $6.6 billion.

Company chairman and CEO Christopher Galvin said the business market is struggling with: "A geopolitical environment of increasing uncertainty".

Despite this, Motorola's results are better than in previous years, which saw the company post losses of $2.5 billion in 2002 and $3.9 billion in 2001.