Ads Continue to Line Alphabet’s Wallet as Company Seeks New Revenue Streams

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Alphabet’s revenue last quarter rose 22% to $26 billion—the same quarterly revenue Microsoft posted on the same day—pocketing profits in excess of $5 billion.

The company’s report, while impressive, was expected. Alphabet is a beacon of consistency among tech titans. Its stock price didn’t budge on the news, but the company’s market value of around $570 billion remains second only to Apple.

“Our growth in the fourth quarter was exceptional,” said Ruth Porat, CFO of Alphabet.

On desktop, Google’s market share of search is 78%. On mobile, it’s 90%, according to research from NetMarketShare.com. Of course, advertising is far from Google’s only business these days. But it’s telling that the company’s original business model of providing the best search engine and then generating revenue through targeted ads—a plan it first executed nearly two decades ago—is one that not only Google still does, but perhaps still does best.

Ad revenue rose 17% 2o $22 billion, showing that all these years later, it’s still Google’s—and Alphabet’s—biggest business. Smart home accessories, smartphones, and virtual reality headsets remain almost hobby projects in terms of income, while autonomous driving could be classified as a moonshot. Ads will always be around in some form, but Alphabet is eager to develop new revenue streams, in the hopes we still talk in two decades about the company as a hallmark of good consistency as we do today.

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