What tech-industry CEOs are saying about the economy

Executives from Apple, AT&T, IBM and other tech companies comment on current and future market conditions

Sun Microsystems CEO Jonathan Schwartz

Sun Microsystems CEO Jonathan Schwartz

Until September, the US tech industry appeared insulated from the year-long economic slowdown. Most of the 20 largest US tech firms reported solid second-quarter earnings in July and August, and they were projecting continued growth in sales through the year-end. Then Wall Street crashed. Here's the latest word from tech executives about current market conditions and the outlook for the rest of this year.

Microsoft expects to keep growing

Thanks to solid enterprise software and Xbox 360 sales, Microsoft posted record revenue of more than US$15 billion for the fiscal quarter that ended September 30, 2008, a 9 percent increase from the same quarter a year ago. Net income was US$4.4 billion, compared with US$4.3 billion in the same quarter a year ago.

Microsoft executives said they saw a slowdown in sales in September and October, and CFO Chris Liddell noted on October 23, 2008 that Microsoft would adjust downward its guidance for the second fiscal quarter of 2009. Still, Liddell said "we feel extremely good about our relative competitive position and our ability to continue outgrowing IT spend. We believe our exceptionally strong cash flow, product pipeline and financial strength will allow us to weather economic conditions well."

AT&T predicts stability

Wireless subscribers and IP data are driving sales for AT&T, which posted third-quarter revenue of US$31.3 billion, up 4 percent from the same quarter a year ago. Net income was US$3.2 billion, up from US$3.1 billion a year ago.

"While the macro environment presents challenges, our business is more resilient than most," said Rick Lindner, senior executive vice president and CFO of AT&T, on October 22, 2008. "We have great assets. We're growing revenues. We continue to have opportunities to reduce costs. Our management team is experienced and tested, and our execution continues to produce good results. Wireless subscriber growth and data growth are both very strong. . . . Business trends continue to be stable."

Apple remains optimistic

Driven by iPhone 3G sales, Apple reported revenue of US$7.9 billion for the quarter that ended September 27, 2008, up 27 percent from the same quarter a year ago. New iPhones, Macbooks and iPods are expected to remain popular.

"We have the strongest product lineup in Apple's history, the most talented employees and the best customers. And $25 billion in the bank," said Steve Jobs, Apple CEO, on October 21, 2008. "We may get buffeted around by the waves a little bit, but we will be fine and stronger than ever when the waters calm in the future."

Join the PC World newsletter!

Error: Please check your email address.
Rocket to Success - Your 10 Tips for Smarter ERP System Selection

Tags global recession

Keep up with the latest tech news, reviews and previews by subscribing to the Good Gear Guide newsletter.

Carolyn Duffy Marsan

Network World
Show Comments

Most Popular Reviews

Latest Articles

Resources

PCW Evaluation Team

Matthew Stivala

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

The HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer is a great device that fits perfectly into my fast paced and mobile lifestyle. My first impression of the printer itself was how incredibly compact and sleek the device was.

Armand Abogado

HP OfficeJet 250 Mobile Printer

Wireless printing from my iPhone was also a handy feature, the whole experience was quick and seamless with no setup requirements - accessed through the default iOS printing menu options.

Azadeh Williams

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

A smarter way to print for busy small business owners, combining speedy printing with scanning and copying, making it easier to produce high quality documents and images at a touch of a button.

Andrew Grant

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

I've had a multifunction printer in the office going on 10 years now. It was a neat bit of kit back in the day -- print, copy, scan, fax -- when printing over WiFi felt a bit like magic. It’s seen better days though and an upgrade’s well overdue. This HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 looks like it ticks all the same boxes: print, copy, scan, and fax. (Really? Does anyone fax anything any more? I guess it's good to know the facility’s there, just in case.) Printing over WiFi is more-or- less standard these days.

Ed Dawson

HP OfficeJet Pro 8730

As a freelance writer who is always on the go, I like my technology to be both efficient and effective so I can do my job well. The HP OfficeJet Pro 8730 Inkjet Printer ticks all the boxes in terms of form factor, performance and user interface.

Michael Hargreaves

Windows 10 for Business / Dell XPS 13

I’d happily recommend this touchscreen laptop and Windows 10 as a great way to get serious work done at a desk or on the road.

Featured Content

Latest Jobs

Don’t have an account? Sign up here

Don't have an account? Sign up now

Forgot password?