Microsoft gets earnings boost from 'cloud'

April 27, 2018

Microsoft said Thursday profits rose sharply in the past quarter, lifted by gains in its core cloud computing operations for business.

The tech giant reported earnings were up 35 percent to $7.4 billion in the fiscal third quarter, with rising 16 percent to $26.8 billion.

Once the world's biggest corporation, Microsoft has shifted its focus away from its consumer software to services using its cloud computing platform and artificial intelligence.

"Our results this quarter reflect the trust people and organizations are placing in the Microsoft Cloud," said chief executive Satya Nadella.

"We are innovating across key growth categories of infrastructure, AI, productivity, and business applications to deliver differentiated value to customers."

Revenue from its Office commercial software and cloud services revenue rose 14 percent, and 12 percent for the consumer operations for the Office suite.

The so-called "Intelligent Cloud," which includes Microsoft's server business and its Azure enterprise operations produced $7.9 billion in revenues, up 17 percent.

Microsoft said LinkedIn, the professional social network it recently acquired, saw revenues up 37 percent from a year ago.

The "More Personal Computing" unit saw a 13 percent revenue gain to $9.9 billion, and within that Windows revenues for personal computers were up some four percent.

Microsoft also saw an 18 percent in gaming revenue from its Xbox software and services, and a 32 percent rise from its Surface devices.

Shares in Microsoft were little changed in after-hours trade despite the stronger-than-expected results.

Microsoft recently shook up its top ranks that highlights its cloud services and de-emphasizes the Windows business that was its bread and butter for years.

The changes included the departure of longtime Microsoft executive and Windows head Terry Myerson.

Microsoft is creating two new engineering teams, one focused on experiences and devices, and the other devoted to artificial intelligence and computing capabilities hosted in the internet cloud.

While the Windows system has lost prominence in the shift to mobile devices, Microsoft is ramping up its efforts against rivals such as Amazon and Google in cloud services and , including the race for digital personal assistants.

Cortana, Microsoft's answer to Amazon Alexa and Google Assistant, is jockeying for position in connected devices including speakers, appliances and automobiles.

Explore further: Microsoft quarterly profit up 28 percent at $4.8 bn

Related Stories

Microsoft quarterly profit up 28 percent at $4.8 bn

April 27, 2017

Microsoft on Thursday reported a strong jump in profits in the just-ended quarter but revenue fell short of expectations in the tech giant's first earnings report incorporating social network LinkedIn.

Cloud boosts Microsoft as it absorbs LinkedIn

January 26, 2017

Microsoft on Thursday reported a rise in profits over the past quarter, showing gains in cloud computing and other new areas of focus as it absorbed the LinkedIn social network.

Microsoft reports loss due to tax charge

February 1, 2018

Microsoft on Wednesday reported a hefty loss in the past quarter, as it set aside billions of dollars for taxes on profits it expects to bring back to the United States following passage of a major tax overhaul.

Recommended for you

Team breaks world record for fast, accurate AI training

November 7, 2018

Researchers at Hong Kong Baptist University (HKBU) have partnered with a team from Tencent Machine Learning to create a new technique for training artificial intelligence (AI) machines faster than ever before while maintaining ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.