Google's parent company, Alphabet, reports 20% revenue increase


Alphabet, the parent company of technology giant Google, has reported a 20% jump in revenue in its latest financial results.

Meanwhile Amazon also reported positive numbers in its own results - with sales for the e-commerce giant up 29% on the same period last year to 32.7 billion US dollars (£26.8 billion).

Amazon chief Jeff Bezos suggested the launch of smart home assistant Amazon Echo in the US and UK, which is powered by artificial intelligence called Alexa, was a key part of the growth.

"Alexa may be Amazon's most loved invention yet - literally - with over 250,000 marriage proposals from customers and counting," he said.

"And she's just getting better. Because Alexa's brain is in the cloud, we can easily and continuously add to her capabilities and make her more useful - wait until you see some of the surprises the team is working on now."

Alphabet's strong results were driven by revenue of 22.5 billion dollars (£18.4 billion) for the last quarter, up from 18.7 billion dollars (£15.3 billion) in the same period last year. As expected, the vast majority of this money came from the Google business, with only around 200 million dollars coming from the so-called "Other Bets" area of Alphabet as a whole, which includes the self-driving car business and technology it continues to test in California.

Alphabet's chief financial officer Ruth Porat said: "We had a great third quarter, with 20% revenue growth year on year, and 23% on a constant currency basis. Mobile search and video are powering our core advertising business and we're excited about the progress of newer businesses in Google and Other Bets."

The Other Bets segment of the company, which contains the so-called "moonshot idea" projects including driverless cars and WiFi signal-carrying weather balloons continues to operate at a loss, however this dropped from 980 million dollars (£804 million) in the last quarter to 865 million dollars (£710 million) in the latest results.

The reports were in stark contrast to those of Twitter, which opted to release its latest financial report before markets opened in the US on Thursday morning.

The firm made a net loss of 102 million US dollars (£83 million) in the three months to the end of September, also announcing that it will be cutting more than 300 jobs globally as part of a shake-up of the business. Later the social media giant also revealed it was to discontinue video sharing service Vine "in the coming months".