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Jobs Rallies Apple Troops With Pep Talk, Updates

By Agence France-Presse Apple Computer Inc. CEO Steve Jobs said July 17 the computer company would "innovate" and invest to help get through the current technology slump. A day after his computer company reported dwindling profits in its third quarter, Jobs said at the MacWorld New York convention that if the computer markets continue to linger on core functions of word processing, Web browsing and e-mail, there was "cause to despair." But Jobs added that Apple is a technology company that wants to expand the computer's role in the home to become a "digital hub" that runs a user's cell phones, pocket computing devices, portable music players and the like. "We're going to innovate through this downturn," declared Jobs. "We're going to invest our way through this." On July 16 Cupertino, Calif.-based Apple joined the technology chorus of woe by reporting that net profits for its third quarter dropped to $32 million, or 9 cents per diluted share, down sharply from the $61 million, or 17 cents per diluted share, in the same quarter last year. Those figures were in line with analysts' expectations. The news came on the same day that Intel Corp., Santa Clara, Calif., reported flat second-quarter earnings and 4,000 job cuts to take place in the second half of 2001. To underscore his innovation point, Jobs unveiled across-the-board upgrades to Apple product lines. These include a beefed-up iPod music player with more memory and software for handling calendars and contacts, and a new Mac OS upgrade called Jaguar with easier user interfaces. Jobs also unveiled a subscription-based ".mac" online service, which will offer e-mail, data storage and abilities to synchronize several Macintosh machines over the Internet. He also unveiled a new swivel display iMac, with a 17-inch color flat panel display. Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2002

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