Apple has not warned the markets of any significant failure to meet expectations in the current quarter.
The results will reflect a period in which Apple launched the Power Mac G5, and announced upgraded iMacs, iPods, PowerBooks, iCal, iSync and DVD Studio Pro 2. Last week, the launch date for Mac OS X 10.3 Panther – October 24 – was announced, while the launch of US iTunes for Windows is expected the day after the financial announcement.
The iTunes service, which sold its millionth song in the quarter, has seen
Apple's stock price surge, with shares soaring more than 70 per cent since the service was introduced. Analysts believe that a Windows version of iTunes will add to greater iPod sales, which totaled 304,000 units in Apple's third quarter.
The company's focus on the notebook market has also paid off, with IDC analysts announcing that Apple took 4.1 per cent of the world's notebook market in the last quarter – up from 3.5 per cent in the previous quarter, and 3.7 per cent year-on-year, making Apple the number-nine notebook vendor worldwide.
Analysts surveyed by Thomson First Call estimate Apple will earn 7 cents a share on $1.7 billion in revenue.
Apple's chief financial officer Fred Anderson offered a positive outlook for the company. He said: "I believe that as revenue grows there could be substantial operating margin leverage in the company."