The analysts at Needham & Co have declared Apple a 'strong buy' in post-financial results analysis the researchers made available today.

Analyst Charlie Wolf notes that strong Mac sales have once again carried the day for Apple's Q2 performance, saying: "In a PC market that experienced 12 per cent growth, Mac shipments rose 51 per cent. We're maintaining our strong buy rating and our price target of $235."

Wolf notes the iPod halo effect continues to drive customers to the Mac, with Apples retail stores contributing to the switch - and the ability to run Windows on Intel Macs continues to generate sales, the analyst observes: "The March spike in education sales provided the first indication of the importance of this feature," he said.

On iPhone sales, he observed: "iPhone sales of 1.7 million units were below our forecast, but above Apple’s. We view the iPhone as still in the overture of an award winning musical. In June, Apple reportedly will introduce the so-called 3G iPhone. As importantly, the company appears poised to change the iPhone’s distribution and pricing model, significantly expanding the number of international carriers and possibly shifting from a revenue sharing to a carrier subsidy-pricing model," he added.