Big technology companies are having great success. Apple, Alphabet, Amazon, Facebook, and Microsoft sold products and services worth around $2.5m (£1.8m) per minute in the first three months of 2021, combined. They gained almost $88bn profit in this period. It means they earned $1bn profit for every working day in these three months.
It’s been a year since online work prevailed across the global economy, the financial results of US tech’s biggest names were obliged to be great. Wall Street analysts were surprised by how fast they gathered money in the quarter, even bigger profits were anticipated in the coming years.
Apple amazed investors with its immensely growing sales, from iPhone buyers excitedly getting new 5G models to the usually slow-selling gadgets such as headphones and watches.
Online advertising is flourishing. According to Facebook, the market is so high that the normal price it charges for ads increased by 30% yearly. Google’s parent company, Alphabet’s earnings raised by 33.3% year on year due to the increase in advertising on online platforms.
Due to work online surge, companies’ demand for data centers increased that Alphabet took advantage by providing fast cloud services. Even though the profits from Amazon’s online retail business were immensely increased, the cloud business also added $1bn to the earnings.
Satya Nadella, the Microsoft chief executive, said the transfer to digital technology was “accelerating” as its profits jumped 31% year on year. “It’s just the beginning,” he said.
Smaller tech companies such as chip designer AMD or social networks Snapchat and Pinterest also had increased profits.
Share price gains were the record highest for the companies (excluding Apple, which is the most valuable company in history). The gains showed extensive investor compliance with Nadella’s belief that the pandemic push to going digital will profit big tech.
The companies’ domination in tech is unparalleled in modern times. Daniel Ives, an analyst at Wedbush Securities, praised record numbers for Apple and also discussed that shares could increase by another 33% to reach a $3tn estimate within 12 months. (Apple has reached the fantastic $1tn record in 2018, and $2tn in August.)
Their balance sheet records show that they can compete with countries on some grounds. Alphabet, Apple, and Microsoft spent $50bn on research and development in 2018 which was was equivalent to R&D’s €37.1bn expenditure by the UK economy in the same year.
Still, there is always a possibility for an organization to do more research. The scale of share buybacks was a remarkable aspect of the last week. Apple’s $90bn return to shareholders alone would be enough to place Apple at FTSE 100 reckoned giants.
Alphabet has cut down some of its spendings on famous “moonshot” programs – such as the “Loon” effort to beam internet via high-altitude balloons – nonetheless, it is investing money into technology that strives to extend the limits of what computers can do. At the same time, it still estimated that it had $50bn lying around to buy back shares.
A consultant at Publicis Sapient, David Donovan, said that there is more to come. He has vast experience in upgrading technology in financial ferms so he has predicted that other sectors of the economy will also adopt the digital technology, putting the economy “on the cusp of a major transformational period”.