Apple UnbruisedBut, as Apple shows, a tight focus and a hot product cycle can certainly let you whistle through the down times. Apple's booming success with the iPhone has helped the company offset the slowdown in Mac and iPod sales. Unlike many other tech shops, Apple has continued to spend and hire through the recession. "Apple is very confident and very focused," says Morgan Keegan analyst Tavis McCourt. "They are true believers in what they are doing over the long run, and that gives them confidence to invest." How bold? Apple boosted its staff size by nearly half last year while increasing its profits by 37% and bumping its cash position up 59%.