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Microsoft and Alphabet are diving deep into AI

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This story was delivered to BI Intelligence Apps and Platforms Briefing subscribers. To learn more and subscribe, please click here. Microsoft and Alphabet's Q3 2017 earnings calls highlighted that artificial intelligence (AI) and the cloud are not only major catalysts of growth for the tech giants, but also centerpieces of their long-term strategies. While Alphabet's overall revenue grew 24% year-over-year (YoY) to reach $27.8 billion in the quarter, the company's "Other Revenues" segment -- which lumps together everything from its Pixel smartphone and hardware products to its cloud computing and storage offerings -- generated $3.4 billion, a 12% share of total revenue. And Microsoft reported revenue of $24.5 billion, up 12% YoY, with 28% coming from its Intelligent Cloud segment.


Microsoft and Alphabet are diving deep into AI

#artificialintelligence

This story was delivered to BI Intelligence Apps and Platforms Briefing subscribers. To learn more and subscribe, please click here. Microsoft and Alphabet's Q3 2017 earnings calls highlighted that artificial intelligence (AI) and the cloud are not only major catalysts of growth for the tech giants, but also centerpieces of their long-term strategies. While Alphabet's overall revenue grew 24% year-over-year (YoY) to reach $27.8 billion in the quarter, the company's "Other Revenues" segment -- which lumps together everything from its Pixel smartphone and hardware products to its cloud computing and storage offerings -- generated $3.4 billion, a 12% share of total revenue. And Microsoft reported revenue of $24.5 billion, up 12% YoY, with 28% coming from its Intelligent Cloud segment.


Microsoft and Alphabet are diving deep into AI

#artificialintelligence

This story was delivered to BI Intelligence Apps and Platforms Briefing subscribers. To learn more and subscribe, please click here. Microsoft and Alphabet's Q3 2017 earnings calls highlighted that artificial intelligence (AI) and the cloud are not only major catalysts of growth for the tech giants, but also centerpieces of their long-term strategies. While Alphabet's overall revenue grew 24% year-over-year (YoY) to reach $27.8 billion in the quarter, the company's "Other Revenues" segment -- which lumps together everything from its Pixel smartphone and hardware products to its cloud computing and storage offerings -- generated $3.4 billion, a 12% share of total revenue. And Microsoft reported revenue of $24.5 billion, up 12% YoY, with 28% coming from its Intelligent Cloud segment.


Alphabet tops Q3 targets as sales climb 24 percent

ZDNet

Alphabet handily topped third quarter revenue and EPS estimates as sales surged 24 percent. The tech giant reported a net income of $6.73 billion, with non-GAAP earnings were $9.57 On average, Wall Street was looking for Q3 earnings of $8.83 per share with $27.2 billion in revenue. Net revenue excluding TAC was expected to be at $21.95 billion. Alphabet delivered above target with $22.2 billion in revenue excluding TAC.


Lyft taxi app boosted by $1bn investment from Google-led consortium

The Guardian

The US ride-hailing company Lyft has secured a $1bn (£760m) investment from a Google-led consortium, a considerable war chest that will help finance its challenge to Uber in the US – and possibly overseas. The funding round was led by CapitalG (formerly known as Google Capital), the strategic investment arm of Google's corporate parent Alphabet, and takes the valuation of Lyft up to $11bn. That's still a fraction of Uber's market cap, which is somewhere between $50bn and $70bn, but it pegs the company as a major domestic competitor to the trouble-stricken cab firm. Lyft is tight-lipped as to what, precisely, the new funding will be spent on. In a statement announcing the investment round, the company said: "While we've made progress towards our vision, we're most excited about what lies ahead.


An AI bot operated by Wells Fargo just slapped sell ratings on Google and Facebook

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And here comes an AI bot developed by stock analysts at Wells Fargo Securities. According to their note to clients on Friday, reported by Bloomberg, the AI bot promptly slapped a "sell" rating on Google and Facebook. Last month, a group led by Ken Sena, head of Global Internet Analyst at Wells Fargo Securities, introduced this "artificially intelligent equity research analyst" or AIERA. This is in blatant contradiction to Wall Street's human hype machine, which has 42 "buy" recommendations out of 47 ratings on Facebook, according to Bloomberg, and 34 "buy" recommendations out of 41 ratings on Alphabet.


Investors are losing out on billions because tech stocks don't pay dividends

USATODAY

If Alphabet, Amazon and Facebook (along with Berkshire Hathaway) paid shareholder dividends at the 2.37% average yield of other S&P 500 companies that do so, it would shake out another $32.2 billion for investors, according to Howard Silverblatt, senior index analyst at S&P Dow Jones Indices. How to choose a smart speaker More: Here's one way Google envisions search changing for you But don't expect these tech companies to pay a dividend anytime soon. "During the 1990s, tech didn't typically pay dividends and they drove the stock market back then," said Kim Forrest, senior equity analyst at Fort Pitt Capital. The S&P tech sector had a dividend yield of 1.36% during the third quarter, the lowest of the 11 sectors and well below the overall S&P 500 of 1.97%, according to Silverblatt.


Artificial Intelligence, Machine Learning, and Deep Learning: A Primer for Investors @themotleyfool #stocks $GOOGL, $NVDA, $GOOG

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Instead of preprogramming software to complete a specific task, as narrow AI does, machine learning uses algorithms that allow a computer to learn from the vast amounts of data it receives so it can complete a task on its own. International Business Machines uses deep learning powered by NVIDIA's graphics processing units (GPUs) to comb through medical images to find cancer cells. The company makes the graphics processors that are integral in AI, machine learning, and deep learning, and lots of companies already look to NVIDIA's hardware to make their AI software a reality. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Alphabet (A shares), Alphabet (C shares), Amazon, Facebook, and Nvidia.


Amazon Is Scouring the Globe for AI Talent @themotleyfool #stocks $GOOGL, $AMZN, $GOOG

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Earlier this year, Alphabet Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOGL) (NASDAQ:GOOG), a pioneer in the AI revolution, revealed that it would launch Google Brain Toronto, the second such research facility in the Great White North. Amazon has revealed plans to build a new AI research hub in Barcelona, Spain, which will be located in the city's 22@ start-up district, and plans to hire more than 100 scientists and software engineers to staff the facility over time. Earlier this year the company expanded its research and development center in Cambridge, England, by adding a 60,000-square-foot facility to house over 400 "machine learning scientists, knowledge engineers, data scientists, mathematical modelers, speech scientists, and software engineers" according to a press release. The Motley Fool owns shares of and recommends Alphabet (A shares), Alphabet (C shares), and Amazon.


News highlights for 25 July 2017

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Google-parent Alphabet, which has enjoyed revenue growth rate of over 20 percent for the past five quarters, said on Monday that TAC, or traffic acquisition costs, jumped 28 percent to $5.09 billion in the second quarter. MILAN/PARIS (Reuters) – France's Vivendi has tightened its grip on Telecom Italia by removing its CEO Flavio Cattaneo and paving the way for a joint venture between its own pay-TV Canal and the Italian group, in a boost to the French firm's ambitions to become a southern European media powerhouse. SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Silicon Valley baron Elon Musk insulted rival billionaire Mark Zuckerberg on Tuesday, escalating a tech wizard war of words over whether robots will become smart enough to kill their human creators. SAN FRANCISCO (Reuters) – Twitter Inc heads toward its quarterly earnings report on Thursday with a stock that has risen more than 40 percent since April when much of Wall Street was ready to write off the tech company.