“Apple Inc. Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook is feeling the heat,” Adam Satariano reports for Bloomberg.

MacDailyNews Take: Is anyone worth upwards of $400 million really feeling any heat? Sure, you want to do well, but, if you don’t… let’s just say, you’ll never find yourself boiling Ramen noodles in order to save money for the rent.

“Eighteen months after taking over from Steve Jobs, Cook is facing rising production costs, competition from Samsung Electronics Co. and slowing growth in smartphones, threatening profits for the world’s most valuable company,” Satariano reports. “An earnings report tomorrow may show that fiscal first- quarter net income slipped 2 percent to $12.8 billion, or $13.48 a share, according to analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg. In all except one quarter since 2003, profit has jumped more than 10 percent. Analysts project sales will rise 18 percent to $54.8 billion, the slowest growth rate since 2009.”

MacDailyNews Take: Gee, analysts, who are almost always wrong, predict a sales increase of only 18% — in this economy, no less — and $54.8 billion generated in three months. How, we ask, how will Apple ever survive in the face of such “competition” from convicted patent infringers?

Satariano reports, “Apple’s shares have dropped almost 30 percent since September, erasing about $190 billion in market value, on concern that demand for iPhones and iPads is ebbing.”

MacDailyNews Take: Baseless “concern.” Otherwise known as fomenting.

Satariano reports, “Apple probably sold about 48 million iPhones during the quarter, according to the average of analysts’ estimates compiled by Bloomberg. Analysts also predict Apple sold 22.4 million iPads, including both the iPad mini and the model with a larger screen, and 5.1 million Macs.”

MacDailyNews Take: Selling that many Macs will be difficult with new iMac models unavailable or severely constrained throughout much of the quarter.

Satariano reports, “Ben Reitzes, an analyst at Barclays Plc, said comments from Cook and Chief Financial Officer Peter Oppenheimer on a conference call with analysts following the financial results will be the company’s most important in years. Apple needs to address questions about iPhone demand as well as whether profit margins are tightening because of the cost of making new products, he said. Apple said in October that its profit margins were lower because of the cost of overhauling its product lineup.”

Full article here.

MacDailyNews Note: As usual, we will be covering Apple’s Q113 (Holiday 2012) quarterly conference call with analysts on Wednesday, January 23rd starting at 5:00pm Eastern. Look for the article to appear on our home page around 4:45pm Eastern tomorrow.